Pardew: This is where Armstrong must improve before he can start

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has revealed where Adam Armstrong must improve to become a starter at St. James' Park.

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew says that Adam Armstrong must become more self-confident before he can become a regular first-team starter at St. James' Park. 

Armstrong made his first start for the senior side against Crystal Palace in the League Cup and thoroughly impressed with his display.

The youngster set-up two goals, including a late Paul Dummett winner, and it has led to calls for him to be included in the first-team on a more regular basis.

However, Pardew is urging caution around throwing the academy-prospect in too early and says there are still things he needs to develop before he can stake a claim for a starting berth. 

"We definitely have to be careful with him as he is only 17 and he has got to play in a position which is the hardest position to play in the Premier League, as a forward," Pardew said to Newcastle's official site. 

"He needs to gain the experience and the self-confidence to play, but he got a lot of that the other night because he started off very nervous and he got better as the game went on. You could see him grow.

"That's what I have to be careful of - that he keeps growing and doesn't get deflated and looks short. But at the moment he looks up to speed so we are very pleased with him."

Armstrong looks the brightest talent to come through the academy in some time at Newcastle and, despite Pardew's comments, he will be hoping to play a part this season.

The Magpies have been in poor form since the opening of the campaign, failing to win any of their of their fixtures to date, but they will be aiming to put that right tonight.

The side take on Stoke City in league action later this evening and another defeat is likely to pile the pressure on their under-performing stars to step-up. 

So far the only real highlight of the season has come in the form of Rolando Arron's form.

The winger has emerged as a player full of potential and Pardew's faith in the 18-year-old to make the grade proves that he is not against throwing youngsters into the first-team set-up if they are talented.

Armstrong will now be hoping that he can prove that he is good enough to make an impression and follow in Aaron's footsteps, as he looks to provide another reason to be positive in what has been a disappointing opening to the campaign so far. 

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