Magpie Roberts fired up to make most of big chance

Callum Roberts
Callum Roberts
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STARLET Callum Roberts is determined to fulfil his promise – and make it at Newcastle United.

The 17-year-old forward was named in Alan Pardew’s first-team squad last weekend.

Roberts’ call followed an impressive run of form for the Magpies’ Under-21s, which continued on Monday night when he netted two goals in a 2-1 cup win over Crewe Alexandra.

Manager Pardew said after the Queens Park Rangers game that Roberts was “knocking on the door”.

“I do like him,” said Pardew. “He has tremendous technique and ability.

“He’s a player that wouldn’t be included normally – he’s still got another year at the academy – but he’s knocking on the door.”

North Shields-born Roberts – who hopes to turn professional at his boyhood club next year – was buoyed by Pardew’s praise.

“I gives me confidence,” said Roberts. “It’s what you want to hear from the first-team manager.

“Obviously, my dream is to make my debut for the first team – that’s my biggest aim.

“It was good to go with the first team. It was good experience for me, learning what it’s all about.”

Roberts also feels he is learning every day from Tyneside legend Peter Beardsley, Newcastle’s reserve-team manager, and coach Ben Dawson.

“Working with Peter is great – he was a top-class player,” said Roberts.

“He helps me every day, and so does Ben (Dawson).

“I’ve just got to keep working.”

Roberts is likely to get another Under-21 run-out on Monday night when Newcastle play Blackburn Rovers at Leigh Sports Village (7pm kick-off).