By Danny Wright
Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom has revealed his team are unlikely to bring back Newcastle’s Adam Armstrong on a second deal, but the player is likely to seek another loan move to a Championship club.
The 20-year-old has spent the season on loan at Oakwell and Heckingbottom says that it’s unlikely that the Yorkshire club will be able to retain any of their temporary squad members for next season.
Newcastle welcome the Tykes to St. James’ Park on Sunday in the final game of the Championship campaign.
Armstrong will not be able to take part in the game as he will be ineligible to play against his parent club, which means that his loan spell at Barnsley is over.
The Newcastle academy product hasn’t been prolific in his spell at Barnsley, scoring just six goals in 38 appearances in all competitions, but Heckingbottom believes other clubs will come in for the players with potential.
“We probably won’t be able to keep any of our loan players. You never know but I would be surprised. If loan players perform well for us, other clubs become interested and we price ourselves out,” said the Championship boss, as quoted by the Newcastle Chronicle.
Armstrong has never scored for the Newcastle first-team in 21 appearances and spent the entirety of last season on loan at Coventry, where he scored 20 times in 40 games.
He played in the first two games of the season for Rafa Benitez’s side but struggled to make an impact off the bench and was shipped out to Barnsley.
The nine-times England Under-20 international has played in all of the Tykes’ league games in 2017 but has scored just once in his last 13 appearances.
It is expected that Newcastle will seek another move for him in the summer, at the Championship level, as his development continues.
Benitez is keet o develop the academy youngsters and will be hopeful that Armstrong will make the grade as a Newcastle player in the future.
Football Insider Verdict
For all the promise that Armstrong has had, he hasn’t delivered at Barnsley this season and he would struggle to get any first-team football next year as the Magpies return to the Premier League. The 20-year-old has played 15 times in England’s top-flight without finding the net so another loan deal next year is key. His measly goal scoring record at Oakwell shows that he isn’t quite up to the standards of the Championship at the moment, but he will very likely get to that level next season. Either way, it’s beginning to look like Armstrong could struggle to be a top-flight regular for Newcastle.
In other Newcastle news, a Sky Sports pundit has delivered his thoughts on the club’s chances of winning the title.