Date: 15th April 2009 at 11:00pm
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One positive popped up on Wednesday as the club confirmed that hot young prospect Nile Ranger had signed a new three and a half year contract at the club. Only just 18, he’s scored 22 times at youth & reserve level and was on the bench for Stoke last week. 2009 has also seen Ranger make his international debut for England U19s.

Speaking of Andy Carroll and Ranger, Shearer had previously said:

“If you’re good enough – it doesn’t matter what age you are. If he can add something to the team, I would have no fear about putting him on. I said to all the guys in the reserves, ‘how you play and how you train will determine to me whether you have a part to play trying to help Newcastle United’.

I’ve seen a response from all of them, including Nile Ranger and Andy Carroll. The response was great last Monday, as it has been in training. I said to Andy and Nile that they both have big roles to play here at this football club for the remaining games of the season.

I told them to go out and show me what they had in the reserves. Both of them have done that and that’s why they were in the squad for Stoke and on the bench. If they keep on producing results then you never know – they might get starts in games.’