Newcastle didn’t enter the Checkatrade Trophy last season, but we have decided to enter it this season as one of the 16 Category One Premier League sides.
All the EFL clubs of League One and League Two are automatically entered into the competition and it will be good for our youngsters to get games to further their development.
Manager Rafa Benitez has commented today in the local papers on what he thinks the competition can do for the Newcastle youth players and why it’s important.
A smiling Rafa Benitez
This is what Rafa has said as reported in the Shields Gazette today:
“I think every year it’s more difficult because of the money.” “You can bring more players from abroad.”
“Normally, if you bring players from abroad, they have to be better.“
“So for the young lads, for the homegrown boys, it’s always more difficult to have an opportunity in the first team.”
“But it’s important for them to keep going, to keep working hard, and if they have talent, it’s ideal for any manager to have a player with talent in the Academy.”
“It’s easy to move him to the first team, but they will need some time.”
“I think the idea of the Academy is to change little things and to have the structure in place that will allow them to continue progressing.”
“They are working hard behind the scenes trying to do something a little bit different, and I think that will be good for the boys.”
“We will see how they progress in the future.”
The young players at Newcastle are very important to the manager as he is trying to set up a supply of good players who can come through to the first team squad.
WE need to develop them ourselves rather than having to buy players all the time which most of the top six clubs seems to be doing these days.
Finally, Newcastle’s three fixtures in the Checkatrade Trophy happen to all be away from home.