Will Phil Airey get his chance this season?

Phil Airey to feature more for NUFC?
During our season in the Championship, our young striker Phil Airey made his way up through the ranks of Newcastle United’s youth system.

He had previously been deployed at right-back under Richard Money, however after switching to the position of striker he became a revelation during the 2009-10 season and Airey managed to bag 19 goals for the academy and reserve team.

Throughout the last season, Airey was once again prolific for the reserves. His goalscoring form did not go unnoticed by both Chris Hughton and Alan Pardew who both talked about him at different stages. In fact his goalscoring abilities allowed him to win the golden boot award for the Premier Reserve League North with a total of 11 goals.

Things weren’t that easy for Airey though. He started life as a right-back for the reserves. He even played a number of different positions for the reserve teams: right-midfield, left-back, left-wing and commenting on the issue he stated “I’ll play wherever I am needed for the club”. In the space of two years he has gone from playing in defence to becoming a striker who’s worked his way up to that position.

Airey is ambitious too as he commented in several interviews that he wanted to emulate the progress of Andy Carroll into the first team. How true that is now, I’m not sure. But it does show he wants to make a name for himself in the reserves and make his way up by integrating into the first team. In fact Airey was moved up into the first-team by Alan Pardew during the second half of the season. Partly due to the injuries that our squad had incurred but it shows that Pardew is at least willing to include him in the first team.



Determination is evident in Airey’s demeanour. When commenting on that he wanted to emulate Carroll’s progress he said ‘I need to prove myself and score a few goals, but we will have to see what happens’. The lad seems to have the right attitude to making a name for himself at Newcastle United. The quote highlights the lad knows what he has to do to get into the first team. That sort of drive and determination will allow Phil Airey to become a fantastic player for us.

Perhaps the best moment for Airey came when he made his full debut for the Magpies’ during the Stevenage FA Cup tie. Airey described it as a ‘bittersweet’ moment when he came on. However this did not seem to affect his performance. The work rate he showed was phenomenal; even though we were losing Airey put his heart and soul in to giving the Stevenage defence a run for their money. Phil Airey did show his ability to many fans that had made the trip down to Newcastle by setting up Joey Barton for his goal.

There is talk of Colin Calderwood’s Hibs making a move for him during this transfer window, but I for one would like the lad to be given a chance to make his mark during the forthcoming pre-season games. If Airey shows the ability that he has demonstrated for the reserves during these games then he may find himself involved in the first team a lot more.

With the rumour mill in full swing the talk of Nile Ranger moving on may allow Phil Airey to feature a lot more this season. I believe that Airey could be a better player than Ranger; Ranger’s time is nearly up in terms of him proving himself to Alan Pardew and the Geordie faithful. If the door is shown to Ranger then Phil Airey has a chance to prove his football skills on the biggest stage of them all.

What do you think? Will Airey make an impact this season?

About Zoë Vicarage

A lifelong Newcastle fan. Currently exiled in Sunderland studying Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland Follow me on Twitter: @ZoeVicarage

38 thoughts on “Will Phil Airey get his chance this season?

  1. Think he’ll only get his chance in League cup this season unless we manage to offload a few of our current lot, especially if we end up playing Ben Arfa just behind a lone striker

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  2. Probably not much! I like us to hold on to some experienced fringe players to keep the squad options strong, but the more I think about it I’d rather we just had our 15-17 first choices and for the rest of the 25 squad to be made up of youngsters. That way they’ll inevitably get chances. If one of the kids is good enough then it feels like we’ve signed a new player when they make a breakthrough, like Ferguson.

    If I were AP I’d be thinking of getting Vuckic, Kadar, Richardson, Airey, Abeid, Moyo and Donaldson all much more involved with the first team squad next season. Hopefully some of those will get chances in pre-season friendlies and impress.

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  3. What I have seen of him in the reserves I have liked. He is a bit raw at the minute I think and a season long loan at this stage I think would help him. I see Stoke are supposed to have made a 6m bid for Sturridge get your arse into gear Pardew and match it!

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  4. Adam and Steve, I both agree with you that our younger lads need to be used a bit more. If they get the chance to in the pre-season then that’s great, much like Vuckic did last year

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  5. Stoke made that offer last week but now I think they’ve signed Carlton Cole. Chelsea probably either laughed them off or they ain’t selling. If they end up needing funds for modric though…

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  6. Supermac started off at Luton as a full back and he didn’t do too bad as a centre forward.It would be great to see young Airey get any where close to the player he was.

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  7. ARMY just a ploy mate to bump up price,who ever gets him for 8/10mil will get a good player imo,had he been english they might have got 10/15mil but not in his last yr of contract

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  8. 😆 😆 😆 😆 av just been talkin 2 myself on the other thread for 20 minutes 😆 😆 didnt realise there was another thread doh 😯

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  9. @Army I agree, was impressed when he came on against stevenage. Hopefully he should get a run out during pre season

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  10. @21- agreed. That’s one of the reasons i’m excited for the preseason. Get a chance to see the new lads and hopefully some younguns.

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  11. Army haha I know. I think Pardew will give them a bit more chance this season. I’m hoping Airey can make his mark. Personally if he can go out in pre season and show his ability then he might have a chance

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  12. agree young kids should get a chance,but you have to be careful with them
    no good bringing them in hopeing they can win a game for you in PL,last 20min or so when team have game won,(oh god remember w.b.a.) i think at home too when fans will help them along imo

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  13. Definitely worth a run out. What little I’ve seen of him has been impressive. Just a case of seeing whether or not he folds under the pressure of playing against the big boys. We’ll never know until we try.

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  14. Richie- I do too, I think he’s probably had long enough to put some effort in and he hasn’t done that

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  15. It makes me sick tbh, there’s people who would kill for an opportunity like he’s had…..he’ll regret it when he’s curled up on a park bench in 20 years time 😉

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  16. He’ll get his chance in the cup games I think, unless he goes out on loan which Pardew seems to like to do with the young ones.

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  17. Richie, I agree. I think he’s had long enough to try and prove himself. About time for someone else to get a chance.

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