Newcastle United fans would like nothing more than one of their own to cheer on from the St. James’ terraces.
The last academy graduate to force his way into, and remain in, the starting XI is Paul Dummett; the long-serving left-back who established himself way back in 2012. Since then, Adam Armstrong, Sammy Ameobi, Dan Barlaser and co have threatened to burst on to the scene but have never really been given enough of an opportunity.
So the fans should be pleased to know that Paul Woolston could be handed a chance to prove that he deserves a future on Tyneside.
The 19-year-old goalkeeper has not made his first-team bow but has impressed at under-23 level. A boyhood Sunderland fan, he was released by the Black Cats as a youngster before arriving at Newcastle and enjoyed some rather sweet revenge on Thursday, as he both scored and saved a spot-kick in the Magpies’ Premier League International Cup penalty shoot-out win against their Wearside rivals.
“I am a Sunderland fan,” Woolston said in quotes reported by the Hartlepool Mail. “I’ll probably get home and my dad, my brothers and none of my family will speak to me!
“I used to be here (at Sunderland) when I was little and got released and came to Newcastle, who have been brilliant with me ever since.”
It is understood that 15 reserve players have been told they can leave the club, so the fact that Woolston was included suggests he may just get his chance somewhere down the line.