Newcastle United fans in the Transfer Tavern will have gotten a closer look at some of their players during their four-day warm-weather training camp in Spain, with a number seeing one of their youngsters for the first time.
Rafa Benitez decided to use the training camp as an opportunity for his players to get some team-bonding exercises under their belts, however, there was a shock inclusion for Nathan Harker.
The 19-year-old has been quietly impressing for the academy side and was not aware that Benitez had been keeping an eye on his progress. The goalkeeper was given the chance to shine in front of his manager when he was told he would make his debut in the friendly with Royal Antwerp with some of the senior players.
It all came a bit of a shock to the goalkeeper, who had admitted he did not know he would be travelling to Spain with the first-team a week prior. Now, he will reportedly continue to train with the senior side over the course of the international break.
“If you’d asked me a week ago I’d be doing this, I’d have no idea, I’d have laughed it off,” he told the Chronicle Live.
“It’s just unbelievable.
“Throughout the week I have gained both experience and confidence.
“Everybody has helped me fit in and everybody is easy to get along with.
“It has been really good.”
Newcastle fans in the Tavern will have been encouraged by the performance of the youngster during the friendly, showing confidence and not being phased by the spectacle. The 19-year-old has only recently penned a new deal to remain at St. James’ Park and will be looking forward to a bright future with the Magpies in a position they are well stocked in for the future.
Newcastle fans, what do you think Harker’s future at the club will be? Let us know below…