Newcastle’s Jak Alnwick inspired by former Sunderland and Spurs goalkeeper

CHANCE ... Jak Alnwick.
CHANCE ... Jak Alnwick.

JAK Alnwick says he’s ready for his big chance at Newcastle United – thanks to his brother Ben.

Alnwick will be in goal for Saturday’s game against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium with senior goalkeepers Tim Krul and Rob Elliot sidelined through injury.

6 October 2012.....     Leeds United v Barnsley'Tykes keeper Ben Alnwick

6 October 2012..... Leeds United v Barnsley'Tykes keeper Ben Alnwick

The 21-year-old came off the bench to make his debut in last weekend’s 2-1 win over Premier League leaders Chelsea.

And Hexham-born Alnwick (right) feels he is ready for a run in the team, having previously played on loan for Gateshead.

Ben, pictured, like his younger sibling, started his career at Sunderland. He went on to join Tottenham Hotspur, next week’s Capital One Cup quarter-final opponents.

And Alwnick says the guidance he has had from the 27-year-old, now at League One club Peterborough United, has been invaluable to him in his fledgling career.

“My brother’s been around a lot,” Alnwick said.

“He’s always said to me ‘be ready’, because when you’re at your lowest, you can get a chance.

“A couple of weeks ago I was No 3 goalkeeper and nowhere near the team, and a couple of weeks later I’m coming on against Chelsea.

“He’s always got words of advice for me.

“I’ve looked up to him all my life. He made sure I was ready for games like this.”

Alnwick won praised from United manager Alan Pardew for his performance against previously-unbeaten Chelsea.

He came on for the second half after Elliot – who is not expected to return to fitness until the New Year – aggravated a thigh strain taking a goal kick.

And Alnwick, having got the better of Diego Costa, isn’t fazed by the prospect of taking on Arsenal.

“I’m just going to prepare myself and take every game as it comes,” said Alnwick. “I’ll be confident for the next game against Arsenal, and I’ll be prepared for it.

“You’ve got to prepare exactly the same as you would normally. It’s Arsenal, and it’s just another game for me.

“I’ve just got to go there and do exactly what I did (against Chelsea).

“It’s going to be a tough game – we know that – but if we stick together as a team again we should be able to get a result.”

Twitter: @milesstarforth