By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Christmas came early for teenage defender Remie Streete as he was involved in Alan Pardew's squad for Wednesday's game at Manchester United - even if it did mean spending 25th December on the training pitch.
The 18-year-old - whose father, Floyd, was a professional footballer with Wolves - enjoyed his first taste of senior action as he travelled to Old Trafford and warmed up with the team ahead of the game.
And although the boyhood Red Devils supporter narrowly missed out on a place on the bench, he is just delighted to be available for selection again after nine months out with an ankle injury - a period he described as "one of the worst times I've had."
He was carried off in a Reserve game against Sunderland back in March, meaning he missed the under-18s' run-in as they won the Premier Academy League Group D title last term and has yet to play for the under-21s this season.
But he returned to full training recently and an indiciation of how highly he is rated despite his long spell on the sidelines came when Alan Pardew included him in his Boxing Day party.
"We were just finishing training on Monday afternoon and JC (John Carver) came over and said 'you're involved in the squad, you're training on Christmas day,'" Streete told nufc.co.uk.
"So I was more than happy to come in. I was just happy to be travelling down - anything else was a bonus. I got to warm up and then got to watch the game as well so that was a bonus and hopefully I can keep working hard in the Reserves and make it a regular thing.
"It's not too dissimilar to going away with the Reserves; you get your preperation right, there's set times for the meals and no-one's late, and the aim is to try and come and get a result but unfortunately we couldn't, although I thought we were fantastic.
"Me and Adam (Campbell) were travelling and we knew it was going to between me and him who missed out on the squad and obviously it was me, but I don't mind. It was my first time - he's been away a few times - but I was more than happy for him to be on the bench this time."
It was a huge boost for the well-built centre-back after working hard throughout most of 2012 to return to action. He was able to resume light running in pre-season but it took several more months to build up the sufficient strength in his ankle to step things up and it was a difficult experience for the youngster, who had been interesting England under-19 scouts before his untimely setback.
But he said: "I've had a good three or four weeks of training under my belt now. I was disappointed to miss out on the Reserve game (at Southampton) the other night but I'm just glad to have got a couple of weeks of training under my belt and be back fit.
"Before I was fit it was one of the worst times I've had. I was just coming in every day, running and doing everything I could to get back fit. And I'm just glad to be back fit now and hopefully playing some games in the New Year.
"I've trained a little bit with the Reserves, a little bit with the first-team, so I just want to keep training as hard as I can and get as many minutes under my belt as possible and get back to where I was before."