By North-east correspondent Harry Sykes
Newcastle youngster Macaulay Gillesphey is targeting another loan move next season as the club prepare to extend his contract.
The versatile defender had a productive spell on loan at League Two Carlisle this season, along with fellow Magpies Academy graduate Alex Gilliead.
Gillesphey, who can play either at left-back or centre-half, is out of contract in the summer but is reportedly expected to be offered a new deal at St James’ Park.
However, the 20-year-old has revealed why another season on loan may be the best option for his career development.
“I’m now looking forward to getting back to Newcastle – but it’s been unbelievable at Carlisle, I’ve loved every minute,” Gillesphey said, as quoted by the Chronicle. “As for the next step personally, another loan move would suit me.
“I’ve still got a lot to learn and hopefully I will get a chance at Newcastle some day – but I think for now another loan move would be ideal.
“[Returning to Carlisle] is something I would definitely have to think about. But I just have to take things as they come over the summer and see what happens.”
Gillesphey impressed for the Newcastle Under-21s side before heading on loan to Brunton Park.
He explained: “At the start of my loan I was still learning the role of left-back, but more recently I played at centre-half, or on the left of a three, and I’m more comfortable there – I proved myself a bit more there than at left-back.
“My coaches at Newcastle were always keeping in touch, seeing how I was doing and if I needed any help.
“Peter Beardsley is very helpful and a very good coach – I learn a lot off him.
“[Professional development coach] Ben Dawson as well would always be texting me and keeping up with how I was doing.”
During his season in Cumbria, Gillesphey made 27 appearances in all competitions and scored twice.