This is a key preseason for 19 year-old Newcastle striker Adam Armstrong, as the local lad tries to show Rafa Benitez that he is good enough for the Newcastle first team.
But Adam suffered a knee injury playing for the England U19 team in Mexico a few weeks ago and it turns out he is still not fully fit and not back in full training, although he is back running.
Adam Armstrong while on loan at Coventry last season
It’s difficult therefore for Rafa to assess the Chapel House lad, but when he is ready then Rafa has to make a decision on the lad and whether he is good enough right now to play in Newcastle’s first team..
Rafa has talked about this problem today and how he will have to assess the local lad objectively:
“He’s running, coming back from his injury. Obviously I know he had a great, great season at Coventry.”
“I was talking with him afterwards. Now we have to wait, and see how he is in pre-season.”
“It’s always difficult with the competition, especially when you are a young player. For me as a manager, if you ask me what do you prefer?”
“I prefer local players but they have to be good enough to compete at the maximum level. The top sides have the best Academies but still they need to bring in foreign players.”
“The main thing is to give him the opportunity to show his level. If we think the best thing is to send him away to keep developing, then we will do that.”
Armstrong was sent out on loan last season and he did well at Coventry City scoring a goal every two games for them and ended up with 20 goals in 40 appearances for the Sky Blues.
Adam is one of our most promising young players at the club and he is a local lad too, so we are hoping he can come through this season.
But if he is not ready then Rafa will farm him out on loan to another club for either half a season or the full season as he continues his development – hopefully on his way to becoming a future Newcastle star player.