After watching and following Newcastle United’s youth system from afar I felt it was time we rank the top prospects at Newcastle United!
This list is not final. Every time a player proves good enough to be in this list I will release another article updating you all with who I added and where they rank. Simultaneously, when someone is “no longer a prospect” (getting to that in the next section) I will also update the list with the new rankings. Even if there are no changes, I will release the rankings at the top of every month to let you know how each player is performing.
Disclaimer: Someone will get mad at this list. Maybe it’s you, it’s completely fine if you’re mad at a list. That’s okay.
- A prospect at Newcastle United is a player who meets ALL of the following criteria:
- The player must be under the age of 25
- The player must have less than 10 Premier League (Or 10 of any of the other top 4 European Leagues - Spain, France, Germany, Italy) appearances for any club
Some thoughts on how these rankings will play out. This is not an end-all-be-all list. I am trying to project, who is the most promising player in Newcastle United’s system. However, I am not going to rank a 17 year old player with 0 Premier League appearances over Matty Longstaff. On the opposite side of the spectrum, I could definitely rank a younger player with a few 1st team appearances in cups over an older player with 8 Premier League appearances. The list will change, and I will consistently provide updates monthly. Follow me on Twitter @nufc_greg for more frequent updates.
Here are the things I’m looking for:
- Age—Not only must the player be young (under 25), but his performance to this point must dominating competition at lower levels.
- Statistics—This is important as the player must have displayed some sort of extraordinary talent at some point. Again, relative to age. If Jack Colback gets a hattrick in a U23 match, I don’t care.
- Position—I will take a look at scouting reports to an extent. If a defensive midfielder is a great passer and holds things together, I won’t be judging him on goals scored or assists as much as I would judge an attacking midfielder.
- Scouting Report/Expert Analysis—I am not nor never have been a Premier League player or a professional Soccer/Football player of any kind. Mainly, because I’m not good enough. Similarly, I do not have the resources or time to scout all of the players who are playing in our academy individually. Maybe one day I will, and if anyone has any connections, get me in touch, and I’d be happy to speak to them. But as of today I’m more fan than expert.
- Special Skill Set—If you are a winger with pace,. you are in. If you are a sniper passing the ball 40 yards, or a great set piece taker, or a stonewall reliable defender, you too are in.
- Injury History—You are young and in the best shape of your life. If the player can’t stay healthy as an academy player in his teens or early 20s, this does not bode well for his future.
- Contribution to the First Team—This is two fold. First, that a player has a path to first team. It does not have to be direct, meaning a one off cup tie appearance. However, if the player is just filling for an injury spot and that’s it, I’m not giving points for that. Second, if the player meets a bunch of my other specifications and is on the cusp of the first team, he will be rewarded.
I will release this list at the start of every month to provide updates on how each player is doing throughout the season AND if there are any ranking changes from players aging out or playing out. The rankings will be re-evaluated again in January
Also, the more I scout these players, the more info I will gain from them and all of that will be added to this monthly list.
Lastly, comment on this article and let me know your thoughts, and hit me up on twitter with any feedback as well (@nufc_greg). Howay the lads!
20. Dylan Stephenson (Mid/Fwd) - 17
Dylan is really one to watch for NUFC. He has a prolific goalscoring record with the U18s and has already trained with the first team and is now playing in the U23s at the age of 17. Last season for the U18s he scored 8 goals in 14 matches. A blistering goalscoring pace led him to get bumped up to the U23s and he started making regular appearances. Now let’s see if he can break into the starting lineup.
19. Dan Langley (GK) - 19
Dan is starting to move up the GK ranks at Newcastle. Last year he was able to gain control of the U23s starting job. Got a clean sheet against the mackems in PL2. Good size at 6’5 and very athletic, I am expecting a good season at the U23 level this year followed by a Loan spell to a League One club next year.
18. Elias Sorensen (Fwd) - 20
We all know Elias Sorensen. People have been clamoring for him to get some first team action for a while. If I made this list two years ago, he would of been near the top, but after two unsuccessful loan spells, Elias still has a lot to prove. In his U18 experience, he had 26 appearances with 10 goals and 6 assists. In the U23s, Elias has 13 goals and 2 assists in 23 appearances. Both are fantastic numbers. But in League Two, 8 appearances, 0 goals and 0 assists, and in League One, 1 appearance, 0 goals and 0 assists. He is currently representing the Denmark U21 national team. Has 2 goals in 2 appearances for them.
17. Lewis Cass (Def) - 20
Lewis has been a reliable defender with Newcastle for some time now. With 77 appearances between the U23s and the U18s. He has a really versatile skill set and while most of his appearances have been at CB, he has also played RB, LB and D Mid. I’m looking for an opportunity for him to jump up to a January loan spell or some First Team action in cups
16. Adam Wilson (Mid) - 19
This is an important year for Adam. Starting his 3rd season with the U23s, he really needs to continue his hot form from last season and keep the momentum moving forward. 37 appearances with the U23s and he has 5 goals and 3 assists. As a Left Winger with loads of pace, the ceiling for Adam is very high.
15. Rosaire Longelo (Mid) - 20
Rosaire has had a bit of an unorthodox path to the Newcastle United youth system. Starting in Norwich’s academy, then to Middlesbrough, then to West Ham, and lastly, NUFC. He really started picking things up towards the second half of last year. 15 appearances in PL2 last year and came up with 4 goals and 2 assists as a Left Mid. He made himself a sure starting in the 11 and I’m betting we are about to see even more production out of him this season for the 20 year old. Also I could definitely see Rosaire moving to a purely LB role in the future. He’s played it before but at the U23 level he is definitely good enough to be a Mid. Something to watch.
14. Oisin McEntee (Def) - 19
Oisin McEntee is a player that Newcastle fans would easily fall in love with. A natural leader, hard working tough CB that isnt afraid to take the ball up the pitch and score a great goal. Oisin moved up to the U23s and made a major impact. I expect him to cause a lot of problems for PL2 attackers this year. I’m also looking forward to seeing more success at the International level. Oisin has been capped at the U17, U18, and U19 levels for Ireland.
13. Yannick Toure (Fwd) - 19
I would not be shocked that come January, Yannick Toure shoots up this list very high. He had a super successful youth team spell at BSC Young boys. For the U18s, the striker scored 24 goals in 25 matches and was the league’s top scorer. Since coming to Newcastle, it took some getting acclimated too. 31 appearances for the U23s at Newcastle and he has 6 goals and 3 assists. He started to catch on at the end of last season and I wouldn't be surprised if he has his first 10 goal season for the U23s at NUFC this year. Yannick made his Switzerland U20 debut in June of 2019 and I’m excited for that to expand this year as well.
12. Jake Turner (GK) - 21
Loan at Morecambe - League Two
Jake Turner and Dan Langley shared the GK1 duties for the U23s last year, both performed well and it was Jake that was awarded with an opportunity at Morecambe. 4 clean sheets in 13 appearances is not too bad for the 21 year old. He has appearances for the England U17s and U19s, and I’m hopeful that the former Bolton man will be able to prove that he should be considered in the future.
11. Joe White (Mid) - 18
Joe made a splash last season. As an attacking midfielder, he joined Dylan Stephenson, and Elliot Anderson as a top 3 attackers that were a force. The U18s benefited for Joe White’s performances and the club took notice. Not only was he called up to play for the U23s but also started training with the NUFC 1st team. Joe made 3 friendly appearances for the England U18 team. If he starts taking over at the U23 level, there will be a lot of interest for loan opportunities next season.
10. Niall Brookwell (Fwd) - 18
Niall was a notable signing for Newcastle taking the formal Liverpool academy this summer. This will be Niall’s first season playing at the U23 level. He’s a holding/box-to-box midfielder that really likes to get involved in the action. He is not afraid to come up on the attack and can take over a match quickly. He has the experience playing good competition at the youth level in the UEFA Youth league and I think he is ready to make the jump at NUFC being an definite starter at the U23 level.
9. Ludwig Francillette (Def) - 21
A really cool backstory with Ludwig as he came from the 6th tier in France to the NUFC U23s. 6’4, this CB seems calm on the ball, and in true NUFC CB fashion, isn’t afraid to shoot and get forward. He had 10 appearances with the U23s last year and I’m expecting that he will be a regular and dominate performer in PL2. I could also see a championship loan happening for him this time next year. He has all the tools.
8. Reagan Thompson (Mid) - 17
A lot of hype for this lad. Already 7 first team appearances under his belt in the 2nd tier in Scotland, and 3 appearances for the Scotland U18s, the 17 year old midfielder has high expectations at NUFC. He will start this year at the U18 level but Newcastle isn’t afraid to pull the trigger and move him to the U23s should he be performing well. Reagan has all the tools that scouts drool over and it was a tough battle to sign the player so I am betting that he lives up to the hype.
7. Mo Sangare (Mid) - 21
Loan at Accrington Stanley - League One
My man MO! He has a huge opportunity this year. Playing in League One, Mo has a chance to prove that he belongs at a higher division and potentially for Newcastle. He is a do it all midfielder right now. He can play an attacking mid role, holding mid and you can even throw him out on the wings if needed. I think has he progresses he has the potential to be a starting box to box midfielder in the Premier League. Last year, Mo made his debut for the Liberian National team and I expect him to gain a permanent starting role there.
6. Elliot Anderson (Mid) - 17
This kid is GOOD! Wherever you put him on the pitch, he produces. In 31 appearances for the U18s and the U23s, the 17 year old center mid has 11 goals and 7 assists. He is an instant difference maker. Elliot has also appeared for the Scotland U16, U17, and U18 level. This will be his first season as a full-time starter for the U23s and he will keep training with the first team. Don’t be surprised if you see him in a cup match for NUFC this year.
5. Tom Allan (Fwd) - 20
Loan at Accrington Stanley - League One
Tom Allan had a break-out season for the U23s last year. In 13 appearances in PL2, Tom had 7 goals and an assist mainly playing as a RW. He also made appearances on the bench for the first team in 4 PL matches and made his first team debut in the FA cup. Getting an assist in his 6 minutes of game time against Rochdale. Tom joined Mo Sangare on loan to Accrington and with those two in the mix, I’m expecting a double against the mackems and a high table finish for them. Tom is definitely good enough to play in League One now, so I would like him to push to be one of the better players in the League.
4. Kelland Watts (Def) - 20
Loan at Plymouth Argyle - League One
At the end of last season, there was a lot of hype surrounding Kelland Watts. He had a great loan spell on a bad team in League Two and it was obvious that he was a top player on the team. He now shifts to League One Plymouth Argyle and I think he will instantly start for them. Already making his Premier League debut on the last match of last season, I could easily see Kel Watts progress to an every match PL player in the future.
3. Dan Barlaser (Mid) - 23
Dan Barlaser has had a lot of experience in first team football. Two Loan seasons back to back in League one and Dan made the most of it. 5 goals and 7 assists in two League One seasons as a defensive midfielder. Most fans of Accrington Stanley and Rotherham United would say that Dan was their player of the season last year. There is a lot to like about his game and he has proven that he has a clutch gene with some late goals and some goals in big cup competitions. Dan is training with the first team now and I expect him on the bench and appearing in cup matches this season for NUFC. It’s been 5 years since he has made a national team appearance but he’s appeared for both Turkey and England’s youth teams. I’m hoping his recent progression is going to get him a call up soon.
2. Freddie Woodman (GK) - 23
Loan at Swansea City - Championship
Once dubbed England’s future keeper, we are getting closer and closer to a reality of Premier League Freddy. For the 2nd consecutive year, Freddie is on loan to Championship side Swansea and he will be the starter for them. 13 clean sheets last year, I am looking for Freddie to dominate like he did at the beginning of last year and prove he deserves a PL call up for Newcastle. It seems like he has fallen out of favor for the National team picture as he has been called up but hasn't appeared in a match since 2018.
1. Matty Longstaff (Mid) - 20
Matty! A lot of recent drama with him but he’s back! 9 PL appearances last year so he is on the cusp of playing out of this prospect list but you can’t deny the promise. Last year was definitely a break out season for him and a memorable moment, scoring on his debut against Manchester United. 2 goals in 9 PL appearances. That would be around 8 or 9 goals a season which would of led the team last year. The success led him to making England U20 appearances for his first call ups. There has been some recent concern as to why he isn't involved in Bruce’s team of late, but I expect that to change soon and I expect him to continue to perform well.