Danger Danger Nile Ranger

By Lee Ryder on Mar 16, 09 09:51 PM

Building up youngsters at Newcastle United has always been a dangerous game on Tyneside but every now and again a player comes along who seems to give you that little bit of belief and that voice in your head that says "the boy's a bit special", watch Nile Ranger for 90 minutes and I bet you feel the same.

Ranger took his tally for the season to 21 in reserve and Academy games with a well taken left footed effort that left Everton goalie Iain Turner with no chance.

He'd also put himself about all night and earned his keep upfront by helping Newcastle's second string fight back from 1-0 down on a mild night at Whitley Park.

Caretaker boss Chris Hughton and sidekick Colin Calderwood watched on from the stands at Blue Flames as Ranger showed that the sort of performance which would have probably had him on the fringes had Newcastle not been deep in relegation trouble.

So what's so good about him?

Well he's got bags of skill, plenty of pace, he's got height and he knows where the net is.

Surely we've been here before though?

Well yes, down the years we've had Paul Brayson, Shola Ameobi, and Michael Chopra as well as an abundance of kids who have looked quality in the reserves then flopped at first team level.

But there seems to be a bit more with Ranger though, he seems to have that little bit of sparkle that perhaps we won't see tested until he's had his chance at first team level.

Everton had edged in front when Cory Sinnott stabbed home on 15 minutes after Newcastle failed to clear a free-kick.

That was the only goal of a poor first half and a much improved performance in the second half resulted in Mark Doninger heading home in the 65th minute after another promising player in James Tavernier.

It was Geordie boy Doninger's ninth of the season to put him clear at the top of the scoring chart but he is still awaiting news on a new contract.

Ranger then burst through with nine minutes left before lashing home with his left peg to win it for Newcastle.


Bil said:

Well he's got bags of skill, plenty of pace, he's got height and he knows where the net is.

Shouldn't he be in the 1st team then?

AndyT said:

If this kid were still at Southampton, he would be starting every game for their first team.

marshy said:

its about time these bunch of amateurs who are our management team gave our youth a chance especially in mid field where we are woeful.

Andrew Davis said:

He has yet to be offered a contract......So that must make him a world beater then Lee.

God i miss Alan Oliver as at least he has a bit of teeth in the reviews after games....

They no way in hell that a player who has yet to play a first team game and yet to be offered a another contract will be a world beater.

Get a grip mate,


brian from durham said:

With at least 5 players leaving in summer and only £10mil to spend,we will need more than Rangers potential to get us out of the championship.

Andrew Davis said:

Hi Lee,

Is it me or have you missed another comment from Steven Taylor that hints at problems with the team structure.....

How the team is sent out and the apparent lack of belief.

As i am not a journalist i would expect that you would check this out.

The team is crying out in the short term for Venables as i am sure that he would get the team going.

Lets hope you will check into this and report this.


Markus said:

Lee, have you given up hope for Newcastle in the PL that you go on about a reserve? How has it come to this without any warning from you or anyone in your assosiated papers before now?

Buffy said:

Chopra yeah. But, Shola Ameobi? i've always thought he would have struggled to score even in a reserve game

TheToonRock said:

You, my fellow fans are not alone as I share the exact same frustration with you which seems to deepen with time. My concern around giving the younger blood an opportunity to prove themselves in the 1st team or perform better than the mercenaries is due to the amount of time left for the club to save us from relegation. I know that most fans have completely different views to which players they believe can execute the required tasks on the field, and I have nothing against your suggestion, yet, it does concern me a lot. If this is the only avenue left for us, then I would be far more worried than I am at the moment. Yet, the word that you used in your post, namely RISKS, is vital at this stage of the season. A conservative tactician is a manager who is too cowardly to fight and too fat to run! The kind of risks I am referring to are tactical risks but CH and CC just dont possess any tactical knowledge at all neither can they employ a tactical advantage to exploit any weaknesses in our opposition. If our team keeps being torn apart, then clearly the tactical approach is only hanging us! Where did it all go wrong? Firstly, it starts with our owner, Ashley. A leader does not practice his position so much in words as in attitude and in actions. We have heard positive words, negative attitudes and hardly any appropriate actions! The Owners of clubs who work most effectively never say I because they dont think I, they think we, they think team! They understand their key objective being to create a management structure that can function as a team successfully. They accept responsibility and never sidestep it, and they always give credit to we! This approach creates trust which goes a long way in getting the objectives done. Ashley is the 360 degree opposite of this. It is suicidal when your manager and board dont function as a team, and the Keegan saga was the start of far more grievous things to come. I am of the belief that Ashley selected Keegan for a quick road to heroism with the fans and the rest of his management crew was based mostly for the financial benefits above anything else as he approached Newcastle in 1 frame of mind, business which is catastrophic! He has admitted in the past to not knowing how to run a football club as he has never done it before. He has! I Secondly, I believe that the attitude of certain players at the club such as NZogbia was completely unacceptable which definitely has negative repercussions on those who are in a positive frame of mind. Surely if you take a sauce brimming with sweetness and blend it with a sauce brimming with sourness you end up with a Sweet n Sour sauce, well this is exactly what occurred with various players at the club. Not everyone has the self confidence and mind power of Alan Shearer. No player can make career progress by standing on the sidelines, whimpering and complaining due to personal a need alone which was the endless player talk we kept hearing from Nzogbia and co. Those type of players arnt willing to sacrifice for the greater good of their club and their unwillingness to make such sacrifices only makes their individual goals extremely difficult to achieve. It goes without saying that if you think and achieve as a team, the individual accolades will take care of themselves automatically yet many of our senior players just dont qualify for this bracket. In short and sweet, they are deadwood that needs to be cleared out the backyard far sooner than we think. From a management perspective, well there isnt much anyone can say because its just simply nonexistent and we are well into March 2009! Absolutely devastating! How can you possibly defend your borders with an army lacking leadership and management! The answer is you cant and thinking that we can be the 1 in a million who can is just preposterous! A good manager is 1 who knows the road of success, walks in the direction of success and shows the way to success! We’re still looking for the road since August 2008! We have cracks in far too many walls and closing them is going to be an uphill battle of mountainous proportions! This is the modern David and Goliath! Can David repeat his heroics! Well, remember that its not the size of the dog in the fight, its the size of the fight in the dog and a perfect example of that are clubs such as Bolton, Stoke, Hull etc. Despite our turmoil, there is 1 positive to take from this gruesome journey. The positive is that our struggles develop our strengths but it becomes far more positive when you go through hardships and decide not to SURRENDER, that is character building strength! Let the rest of the Premier League know that whether it wishes us to fall in defeat and get relegated or rise in victory and survive, we shall approach the remainder of our fixtures with the absolutely no fear. We will sacrifice everything, bear any burden required, meet any obstacle with strength, and face up to any challenge to assure the survival of Newcastle United Football Club! Despite what anyone saids, this has been witnessed in every home match with us, the fans displaying those qualities in abundance! You will never see an empty Saint James Park, never!

kieran said:

I see Michael Owen is worried people think he`s injury prone. What`s the matter Michael worried you won`t get quite as much money when you leave us for nothing? He should be more worried that all of us think he`s been a collosal failure and waste of money, not to mention the fact we`re on the brink of relegation here! It makes me sick.

Lee Ryder Author Profile Pagesaid:

Are you sure Andrew? Have you watched him play for 90 minutes yet?

Andrew Davis said:

How come Lee that you have not addressed the Taylor comments last saturday that seemed to suggest there are problems with the players and how we come out to play.

I think you should be checking this out.....

I wish for 3 points tommorow as arsenal have a few players out tommorow.


dalglish said:

a striker with potential in the reserve team??? he must be due a game for our 1st team on the wing shortly.

come on ashley, sort it out. if you are happy with how the coaches are working how bad does it have to get before you start getting unhappy. you must be the only one in newcastle to be happy to have a man in joint charge who was sacked for almost taking a team down to the 3rd tier of english football.


Lee Ryder

Lee Ryder - Proudly born and bred on Tyneside, the Chronicle's chief sports writer has followed the fortunes of the club over the last three decades as a Toon fan and football writer.

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