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Newcastle Sign 20 Year-Old Whiz Kid And Top Young Defender

4:11 pm, Friday, July 8th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 10 Comments

Newcastle United have announced the signing of forward 20 year-old Yasin Ben El-Mhanni and he will join Peter Beardsley’s Development squad – so he is one for the future.

Yasin was announced by the club as a part of a double signing, with Scotland Under-21 international center-back Stuart Findlay also announced as joining the club; Stuart is also 20 years old.

Yasin Ben El-Mhanni and Stuart Findley

Yasin Ben El-Mhanni and Stuart Findley

Yasin Ben El-Mhanni had significant interest from a number of clubs including  Leicester City, Norwich and Arsenal, but Newcastle beat out the competition.

Yasin has often been compared to Leicester City’s Riyad Mahrez, probably because of his style of play and his significant skills.

This is how Yasin explained why he is compared to Mahrez:

“I guess it is because we both have heritage from Morocco.” “But Mahrez is there and has made his name.”

“He’s been so good and I’m just at the beginning of trying to make a professional career.”

“He plays with freedom and skill and I like to play the same way.”

“I believe there are others playing in non-league that, if given the platform, could potentially be good enough.”

The London-born youngster began his career with Barnet before moving on to Aldershot Town, Farnborough and Lewes and he spent some time at Chelsea last season playing for their U21 side.

Yasin usually plays on the left wing, but he is equally adept on the right wing.

Both of these players are ones for the future as Rafa Benitez brings in younger players who can be developed at the club – hopefully into future Newcastle stars.

Newcastle have been trying to do that for a while now, but have hardly been successful.

Hopefully things can change with Rafa Benitez in the lead on all football matters at Newcastle.

Central defender Findlay has just left Celtic after he spent last season on loan at Scottish Premiership side Kilmarnock, who are now managed by former Newcastle player and coach Lee Clark.

Findlay joined Celtic back in 2009 as a 14 year-old and he came through the Celtic Youth Academy but never played for the first team, although he played regularly for the Development Side.

Stuart has also been out on loan to  Greenock Morton and Dumbarton and the lad has been capped 13 times for Scotland’s U21 side.

So far he has 56 first team appearances to his name and he has played for all the Scotland Youth sides and looks to be a very promising defender who stands 6ft 3ins tall.

Newcastle’s Development Manager Peter Beardsley had this to say about the duo:

“It’s exciting for them, it’s exciting for us and it’s a really good thing for the club.”

“Steve Nickson and his recruitment staff have done their homework and done really well, and we’re excited.”

“They’re good lads, they’re nice lads and they mix well with the group, and that for me is the most important thing.”

In addition to new signings for the first team, it will be good to see younger players signed to strengthen the Development squad at Newcastle.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Development squad · Newcastle News · Newcastle Youth · Stuart Findlay · Yasin Ben El-Mhanni

10 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Average_Contents // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:13 PM

    Aye Tsunki, Gary and Steven.

  • 2 Average_Contents // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:15 PM

    Made up with bejesus gamaz signing. Rafa working his magic once again. Get in.

  • 3 Average_Contents // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:18 PM

    Never heard of either of these so I guess time will tell.

  • 4 nut meg // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:27 PM

    nut meg // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:25 PM

    Yes there was, brothers Steve & Gary.

  • 5 Belfast // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:31 PM

    That new Leicester signing looks like another one of these boys with a dodgy passport.

    Only 23 apparently lol

  • 6 Our Toon // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:35 PM


    Yep you must be right about sissoko, he didn’t play that well and just wanted to get rid of the ball must be why he was praised so heavily in France and by EXPERTS who’ve actually played the game at the highest level here including one or two that know a lot about the game like Wenger. It seems I managed to see a very good performance which is in line with what most habe said and you saw an abject performance for which you are in a minority.

    We have good debates but this one is completely nonsensical as you’ll unfortunately be blinded by your repeated hatred.

  • 7 The American // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:51 PM

    Good to see a change in emphasis regarding Development and Youth Academy matters. I feel that if we want to get sustained success it is paramount that we develop our own young talent.

  • 8 The American // Jul 8, 2016 at 4:56 PM

    Our Toon

    As much as I agree with you regarding the legitmacy of Sissoko’s performance, you must admit that the common man can be right and veritable football fonts of knowledge like Wenger can be wrong. Not a nonsensical debate really, just an unpopular opinion.

  • 9 GeordieTwo // Jul 8, 2016 at 5:05 PM

    Looks like Santon is going to Sunderland. Very poor choice Davide. Harrumph….

  • 10 Toon Tang // Jul 8, 2016 at 8:19 PM

    “he will join Peter Beardsley’s Development squad – so he is one for the future”

    So we probably won’t ever see him in the first team then that might as well say.

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