With Newcastle splashing out a record sum of money in the summer of 2019 on the likes of Joelinton, there was one new signing that went rather under the radar at St James’ Park.
Kyle Scott arrived on a two-year deal from fellow Premier League side Chelsea, and he came with some glowing references to boot too.
The Chronicle revealed that two of his former teammates at Stamford Bridge, Eden Hazard and David Luiz, were “said to have encouraged Scott to try his luck with Barcelona or PSG as his future at Chelsea remained in limbo”.
And so when the Magpies got their man, people close to the deal were unequivocal in just how big of a coup they had pulled off. His representative, Neil Bartholemew, said: “Chelsea offered him a four-year extension, so he wasn’t going to be on a free – United have got themselves a real bargain.
“When I spoke to people within the game, they couldn’t believe he was available – so it’s a credit to Lee Charnley, he’s been excellent. He listened to me and trusted my judgment. He and Steve Nickson got on this deal straight away, there was interest from Manchester City and Tottenham but they got the deal done.”
But since signing the now 22-year-old, he has yet to make a single first-team appearance at St James’ Park. The central midfielder has played all of his games thus far for the U23s, but his performances at academy level for former club Chelsea show just how much of a talent Newcastle have on their hands.
In 41 games for the U23s at Stamford Bridge, he scored two goals and provided an impressive eight assists, and his ability to unlock defences from deeper in midfield could give Steve Bruce’s side an added cutting edge to their line-up.
An injury earlier in the calendar year halted his progress on Tyneside, but he will now be eager to make up for lost time. And Scott himself pointed to Sean Longstaff last summer as being a source of inspiration for him.
He said: “Newcastle is a massive club with massive history, and for young kids they get that opportunity – obviously you see with Longstaff, he did it last year – so it’s a good opportunity for me. You look at what kind of players have come through here and how much opportunity they get, and I do feel at this place they do give it. As long as you’re doing well, working hard and playing well, then I think you’ll get your chance.”
Now it’s up to Bruce to show him a bit of faith over this coming season.