Eddie Howe delivers Elliot Anderson verdict at Newcastle United as Sheffield Wednesday and Hearts sit tight

Elliot Anderson has featured in both of Newcastle United’s pre-season friendlies this summer.

Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe admits he has been impressed by Elliot Anderson in pre-season ahead of a decision on his future.

The 19-year-old is in Austria with the Magpies after helping Bristol Rovers clinch automatic promotion from League Two last season.

Anderson scored eight times in 21 appearances for Joey Barton’s side - including the goal that clinched promotion via a dramatic final day 7-0 win against Scunthorpe United.

Howe has been keen to get a closer look at the attacking midfielder - starting him versus Gateshead last weekend before he played an hour against 1860 Munich on Friday.

And the Scotland under-21s international is certainly making his mark, with Howe recognising a “real growth” in the player.

Eddie Howe on Elliot Anderson

“I think he’s done really well,” Howe told reporters after the 3-0 win over 1860 Munich at the Saalfelden Arena.

“He’s come back with a real enthusiasm and desire to do well, and show us how much he’s progressed since his loan spell.

“I thought he was probably the biggest bright spark we had during that first half, which was a difficult one for us.

Newcastle United in Austria with Liam Kennedy and Jordan Cronin.

“I’ve been really impressed by him. He’s quite quiet within the group, but is a very steely, determined lad who wants to do well. We really like.

“He looks like he has the ability now to go box-to-box to compete in and out of possession, also duels and cover ground.

“We’ve seen a real growth in his endurance levels.”

Interest is emerging - and Anderson is open to loan move

A number of League One and Championship clubs have shown interest in Anderson but Howe will hold off on a decision until later this month.

Anderson, asked about his future earlier this week, admits he is out to another temporary exit.

He said: I’ve just got to try and impress as much as I can really, and do my best.

“I’ve got to try and compete for a place around the team and see how I can do.

“I think not trying too hard to do that (is important) - just do your stuff, and see if you catch an eye, and work as hard as you can. It’s kind of like a free hit - I’ll give it my best shot, and if they think I need another season out (on loan), I’m happy to do that. Whatever’s best for me.

“I’d say for me, probably playing games is the most important thing, to be honest - carrying on my run that I have, and just trying to keep striving. Hopefully that’s here, or if it’s somewhere else on loan, I’ll be giving it my all.”