Trio net deals with Magpies

Lewis Cass, Kieran Aplin and Matthew Longstaff have been awarded football scholarships at Newcastle United FC.
Lewis Cass, Kieran Aplin and Matthew Longstaff have been awarded football scholarships at Newcastle United FC.
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Three students are celebrating after netting scholarships with Premier League club Newcastle United.

Lewis Cass, Kieran Aplin and Matthew Longstaff, Year 11 students at John Spence Community High School in North Shields, have been awarded football scholarships from 2016-18.

Since Year 9, the trio have spent two half-days every week at the Academy.

Headteacher Jim Stephenson said: “We are very proud of the success achieved by our students and we are delighted that our partnership with our local football clubs has proved so beneficial in their development.”

They are the latest students to land a scholarship thanks to the positive relationship between the school and academy staff from nearby clubs.

Sean Longstaff, 18, has made regular appearances for Newcastle United’s Under 21 side while goalkeeper Greg Purvis is a regular in the Sunderland Under 18 side.

Hoping to follow in their footsteps are three Year 8 boys – Michael Spellman and Louis Spraggon with Newcastle and Louis Watts with Sunderland.

They too spend two afternoons per week at the academies, receiving practical expert coaching, as well as spending time in the classroom with Academy staff focusing on their school work. Plus Year 7 student Joel Green is also with Newcastle United.