By Tom Easterby
With a top-flight debut now under his belt, Rolando Aarons is setting his sights on a regular spot in in the Newcastle United squad.
The 18-year-old Jamaican came on for a 16-minute cameo against Manchester City just over a week ago and now, with Gillingham next up in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night (7.45pm kick-off), the pacy wideman is eager to continue making an impression.
"Like anyone, if you want to be a first team regular here you've got to start by coming off the bench and impressing the manager and I'm trying my best to do that," explained the Kingston-born youngster.
"Hopefully when I get another opportunity I'll show him a bit more about myself, because I didn't really get enough chances to show what I'm capable of (against Manchester City), so next time I hope I'll do better.
"(Gillingham) is going to be different to Manchester City obviously, as we had 50,000 with us at home, but I'm going to take it in. It's an extra experience and I'll learn from it, and in the next game I'll do the same."
After a promising pre-season, which brought a first professional goal against Schalke at the VELTINS-Arena, Aarons is enjoying playing alongside esteemed summer recruits such as Remy Cabella and Emmanuel Riviere - even if his initiation into the United squad could perhaps have gone better.
"I was terrible - I was one of the worst," he said, after having to sing in front of the entire squad and staff on their tour of New Zealand.
"It was one of the worst things I've ever done, but you have to do it. I sang Drake's 'Hold On I'm Coming Home', but it wasn't the best!
"They (Cabella, Riviere and Janmaat) are top players. I'm just trying to learn as much as I can from them and watch them and improve my game. I can't ask for more than playing with players like that."
And with fellow young guns Adam Armstrong and Lubo Satka also waiting in the wings, Aarons knows the Club's willingness to place faith in their youthful stars will stand him in good stead should he continue to improve.
"It gives me more confidence to keep improving and keep the hunger, because I know that if I keep improving I'll get a chance," he explained.
"It's the same with guys like Lubo and Arma so we're just going to keep pushing and see where it takes us."