Peter Beardsley has told The Chronicle that Siem de Jong is a positive influence on the Newcastle United youngsters.
The Newcastle legend made the comments following De Jong’s appearance for the Magpies’ Under-21 side on Wednesday evening.
De Jong, who has struggled with injury problems throughout the season, completed 45 minutes of action for the Newcastle U21 side in a 2-0 loss to Derby County.
Beardsley, who is in charge of the Newcastle U21 team, told The Chronicle: “We always knew that (he’d be a good addition).
“You can’t have been captain of Ajax if you are a bad player. He is great around the young players and always has been.”
De Jong is 26 years of age and joined Newcastle from Dutch giants Ajax in the summer of 2014.
The Netherlands international was expected to be a key player for the Magpies this season, but a thigh injury in the opening weeks of the season followed by collapsed lung has stopped him from doing that.
Having developed at Ajax’s youth academy, De Jong knows all about young players and the importance of nurturing them.
Playing with the Under-21s is going to be beneficial for the Dutchman as it will help him get match-fit, but it is also going to be good for the youngsters, who will get to play alongside one of the best players Ajax have produced in recent years.