Newcastle United could be seeing the back of two players who were highly thought of as young players but for whatever reason were not able to make the grade at St. James' Park. There can be little surprise that the players in question are leaving, but it demonstrates the need to shine a light at exactly what is going on in Newcastle's Academy and development programs. These two are the first of several players that could be leaving the club before the window closes that have just flat been failed by our development system.
Haris Vuckic, who has some ardent supporters within the Newcastle fan base, spent time on loan with Rangers for the second half of last season, scoring 9 times. Those Scottish Championship goals were not enough to convince Steve McClaren that the Slovenian was deserving of a first team look at all, instead being shipped off to Holland with the reserves. In all honesty, though, although he did flash from time to time on loan, he never managed to bring those flashes to the Newcastle first-team squad. There is plenty of room for wondering if it could have been different under a different manager or system, but it's moot at this point as he appears to be headed back north of the border to rejoin Rangers, but this time on a permanent basis.
Mehdi Abeid got a good, hard look from Steve McClaren during the preseason and it seemed like perhaps a career revival was on the cards at Newcastle. It is now evident that Abeid who, like Vuckic, never managed to produce the types of performances that he did while on loan to Panathinaikos two seasons ago, did not earn his spot in McClaren's reckoning. Panathinaikos are said to be negotiating a fee with Newcastle for Abeid to return to Greece although they don't want to pay as much as Charnley and Co. have asked. There will perhaps be fewer tears at Abeid's departure than those (any?) shed for Vuckic, but at it's base, we're looking at one of two problems within our club. 1) Player development is not succeeding at developing young talents that they have been given for some reason, or 2) Players who have been highly regarded by the scouting department are not good enough to be developed to a Premier League level. Either way, it's disappointing to have missed with two more young players with Gael Bigirimana likely not far from his own Newcastle exit.