Walters aiming for positive Premier League Cup run
Written by Luke Vinton
Defender Oliver Walters is targeting another strong run in the Premier League Cup this season ahead of Newcastle United Under-23s' group stage clash against West Bromwich Albion.
Newcastle's second-string host the young Baggies at Whitley Park (kick-off 12pm GMT), with a victory on Friday sending the Magpies into top spot of Group C.
United - who reached the Premier League Cup final last term before a narrow 1-0 defeat to winners Everton - began their campaign in bright fashion in October with a 1-0 away win against Hull City and Walters is aiming to replicate another strong run in the tournament.
The left-back told nufc.co.uk: "Last year, we got to the Premier League Cup final so we obviously want to try and get as far as we can in the competition and win it. We need to get out of the group stage first so the game against West Brom is an important step in doing that.
"It's a big game. It would give us a strong advantage if we win it to move us into the top of the group. Hopefully, we can do it.
"It's a good experience playing in this tournament. You get the chance to see what it is like to play against the teams who are in the division above. It gives us a good sort of point to see where we are as a group.
"We beat Derby last year, who are playing in division one and we beat a Leeds side who were doing really well in their league."
West Brom are familiar opposition for Newcastle with the West Midlands outfit also plying their trade in the second tier of Premier League 2.
The Baggies edged United's youngsters in September with a narrow 2-1 win at Albion's Training Ground which saw Hal Robson-Kanu net twice, including a stoppage time strike, but Walters is determined for his side to come out victorious on home soil.
"We played West Brom in the league at their place and they had a very strong team out with a few first team players in the side but we played very well," the 19-year-old added.
"We were unlucky to lose the game 2-1, conceding in the last minute, but hopefully we can come out with a win this time.
"We'll be playing six games this month, with four of those being cup games. It has been difficult for us as a squad as we have had a lot of injuries but some of the players from the under-18 squad have stepped up to help the team and they have all done very well."
Tickets for the game at Whitley Park are available at the turnstiles, priced at £3 for adults and £1 for concessions. Admission is free for season ticket holders and members.
"Last year, we got to the Premier League Cup final so we obviously want to try and get as far as we can in the competition and win it. We need to get out of the group stage first so the game against West Brom is an important step in doing that."