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Introducing Jamie Sterry

Written by Newcastle Utd

Find out more about young right-back Jamie Sterry, who made his Newcastle United debut against Tottenham on Sunday

By Dan King - Newcastle United Digital Editor

When Jamie Sterry made his Newcastle United debut against Tottenham on Sunday, he was living not just his dream but that of his father too.

Lee Sterry was himself a highly promising player as a youngster, but his fledgling career was heavily affected by injury. He now runs a successful football coaching school across the Tyneside region, Lee Sterry Sports Coaching, and is the founder of junior side Team Gosforth FC.

Having been regularly involved with United's first team squad this season, his 20-year-old son made his Barclays Premier League bow as an 83rd-minute substitute in Sunday's 5-1 victory but for a while, it looked as if injuries might hamper Jamie's progress, just as they did Lee's.

The talented right-back had to wait longer than many of his contemporaries to be offered a scholarship at United's Little Benton Academy while he proved his fitness following a back problem which sidelined him for almost a year at a crucial stage of his development.

Speaking to the Club's official matchday programme, he admitted that it was a tense time.

"I was quite nervous because other players were playing well and they were all a lot fitter than me, because I'd been out for so long," he said.

"I'd missed a full season and during the six week holidays, when you're off school, I was coming in and trying to prove myself."

A young Jamie Sterry

He quickly made up for lost time and, having impressed in the Magpies' run to the FA Youth Cup quarter-finals in 2013/14, became a regular at under-21 level until injury struck again.

In the 48th minute of the Techflow Group Northumberland FA Senior Cup final against Blyth in April 2014, he suffered an ankle ligament injury which required an operation and ruled him out for the whole of the first half of last season.

But, through his own dedication and with the support of his family including Lee, mother Katrina and brothers Lewis and Oliver, he returned stronger than ever from that setback.

Newcastle-born Sterry, who joined his boyhood club as a ten-year-old, is eligible to play for Italy as well as England as his grandfather, Franco, hails from Sicily.

His footballing hero is fellow Geordie boy Paul Gascoigne but, strong in the tackle and happy to get forward, he models his game on Barcelona's Dani Alves.

"I love attacking as much as defending," he said. "But defending a goal - stopping it on the line or whatever - is just as good as scoring a goal, even if the goalscorers get most of the glory."

But for Sterry, who signed his first professional contract last summer, his own taste of glory came on Sunday.

He became the 1,077th player to represent Newcastle United - and the 207th in the Premier League.

And although the Magpies will be in the Championship next season, Sterry could have a part to play as they look to bounce back at the first attempt.

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