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Smith upbeat despite Trophy setback

Written by Rory Mitchinson

Callum Smith felt that Newcastle United’s youngsters were unlucky not to pick up a point from Tuesday night’s Checkatrade Trophy clash at Port Vale.

Forward Tyrone Barnett rewarded the League Two side for a positive start by glancing home James Gibbons’ cross midway through the first half.

At that point, Peter Beardsley’s side had still to register a shot at goal, but they improved as the interval beckoned, Luke Charman coming close to a leveller with a powerful attempt from range.

Smith himself drilled narrowly wide as the Magpies enjoyed the better of the second half, and the teenage winger believed that a draw – followed by a penalty shootout to determine the recipients of an extra point – would have been a fair outcome.

“In the first half, we weren’t great. We were slow to start, but towards the end of the half we started to have a bit more of the ball and started to go forward, and the second half was just completely different,” he told nufc.co.uk.

“We created chances, and were probably unlucky not to end up with something from the game. After we started passing the ball forward, we looked the better team.”

A regular for United’s Under-18 side last season, Smith has figured in every game bar one for Beardsley’s charges this term.

The wide-man acknowledged that the Trophy is affording a number of the Magpies’ youngsters a chance to progress, and spoke of his hunger to consolidate his starting berth in the weeks to come.

“The Checkatrade Trophy is challenging, but it’s something that I have to do, and all of the other lads have to do, if we want to improve,” he said. “There are some who are experienced enough and know what the standard’s like (against EFL clubs), but for some of us, it’s a new challenge.

“The season’s been good for me so far, but I have to look at the next game and try and keep my name on the teamsheet.

“We still feel good, we’re trying our best, and we’re working to improve all the time. And hopefully next time, against Southampton away, we can get the win.”

"In the first half, we weren’t great. We were slow to start, but towards the end of the half we started to have a bit more of the ball and started to go forward, and the second half was just completely different. We created chances, and were probably unlucky not to end up with something from the game."

Callum Smith

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