FORMER Newcastle United striker Nile Ranger is to deny the rape charge he faces, a court heard today.
The alleged attack is said to have happened at a hotel in Jesmond, Newcastle, in January.
Ranger, 22, of Bailey Close, Haringey, left Newcastle United in March, and he is currently without a club.
The former England under-19 international was not asked to enter a plea to the charge during a brief hearing at the city’s crown court today.
The case was adjourned, but Judge John Evans told him: “The next hearing for this matter will be on October 21, when you will be required to come back to court and enter your plea.
“Assuming you plead not guilty, as I understand you intend, it will be necessary for you to submit a defence statement, which your legal representatives will help you with, and you will be tried during the week of January 20 next year.”
Ranger, who spoke only to confirm his name, was granted conditional bail in the meantime.
One of the terms of his bail prevents him from entering Newcastle or anywhere else in the Northumbria Police force area.
He must not contact any prosecution witness and has to live at his home address.
Ranger has also been ordered to surrender his passport.
Ranger made more than 50 appearances for Newcastle United following his debut in August 2009.
He had spells on loan at Sheffield Wednesday and Barnsley.