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Talking about my generation

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Michael Owen may not be running out for the reserves tonight at Middlesbrough, but Newcastle United coach Lee Clark has admitted the clash against the Teessiders is another opportunity for his Toon young guns to shine.

 

United are set to field a strong side on Teesside tonight, with Shola Ameobi, Titus Bramble and Charles N'Zogbia all featuring.

 

But Clark - who has just been presented with his UEFA A Badge - handed 15-year-olds Stewart Bath and Kieran Wrightson a sniff of the action against Manchester United in the second string's last outing, and will again be interested in the development of his youngsters too.

 

And with the likes of hot-shot Andy Carroll already making rapid progress in and around the first-team pool, Clark knows the penultimate FA Premier Reserve League encounter for his kids is a great chance to showcase themselves for next season at a top-flight venue in the Riverside.

 

Clark told the Chronicle: "The younger players can start next season with a lot of confidence from what they've experienced this season.

 

"These young boys are getting that experience now and they will do in the last two games against Middlesbrough and Bolton.

 

"These will be the players that I will be working with next season.

 

"Andy Carroll, David Edgar and Matty Pattison will all be closer to the first team, they may not be around me.

 

"But I had two 15-year-olds coming off the bench last week against Man United and it's great news for them."

 

Clark will also be hoping that the next generation will be able to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Carroll, Edgar and Pattison and other graduates in years gone by like Ameobi, Peter Ramage and Steven Taylor, who has arguably gone on to be the club's No 1 defender.

 

And after beating a highly-rated young Man United team last week in what could be the final reserve game at Kingston Park with a move elsewhere now on the cards, Clark admitted he firmly believes progress in being made.

 

He added: "We started brightly against Man United and grew in confidence for such a young squad.

 

"It's been a great experience with the reserves, it's hugely satisfying, especially as the lads have been so young this year."

 

Kick-off at the Riverside is 7pm tonight.

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Clark will also be hoping that the next generation will be able to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Carroll, Edgar and Pattison and other graduates in years gone by like Ameobi, Peter Ramage and Steven Taylor, who has arguably gone on to be the club's No 1 defender.

 

 

I hope the players don't!

 

"I want to be the next Peter Ramage" :ok:

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