Newcastle United midfielder in line for new contract
The 18-year-old made his senior debut during the club’s pre-season campaign, and was on the bench for this month’s Premier League game against Manchester United at Old Trafford.
White signed his first professional deal in late 2019 after turning 17, and his progress at Newcastle hasn’t gone unnoticed elsewhere.
United lost 16-year-old midfielder Bobby Clark, one of the Academy’s brightest talents, to Liverpool in the summer.
Bruce said: “First and foremost, it’s what the boy and his family wanted. We’re disappointed that we lost him, because nobody wants to lose a good player. I think, in the end, it was best for all parties to part company.”
The club did, however, secure 18-year-old midfielder Elliot Anderson – who made his comeback from injury in a Premier League 2 fixture this week – on a “long-term contract” late last year.
White – who had started out at hometown club Carlisle United, before moving to Newcastle in 2016 – “caught the eye” in pre-season. Speaking after he came off the bench against Burton Albion in July, Bruce said: “He caught the eye, didn’t he?
“We brought him up about 18 months ago before Covid, and he quietly impressed us. And, all of a sudden, they grow all of a sudden, and find a yard of pace, and look bigger and stronger. And he’s certainly done that. Over the last couple of games in particular, I’ve been very, very pleased with what I’ve seen.
"Well done to him. The good thing is pre-season’s given me a chance to see him in a game. He can be really pleased with himself. He catches everybody’s eye with his strength, physicality – and the way he handles the ball.”
Bruce had considered handing White his Premier League debut at Old Trafford, where Newcastle were beaten 4-1.
"We were just at 2-1 thinking ‘how do we change?’,” said United’s head coach. “And ‘can we be a bigger threat?’. The third goal is the kick in the teeth, isn’t it. After that, it went away.”