Newcastle United announce new contract for central defender

Kelland Watts has signed a new two-year contract with his boyhood club Newcastle United.

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Newcastle United have announced Kelland Watts has signed a new two-year contract.

The 22-year-old, currently on loan at League One side Wigan Athletic, has risen through the academy ranks at St James’ Park since joining aged eight.

Born in Alnwick, the defender has already made his Premier League debut for the Magpies - featuring against Liverpool on the final day of the 2019/20 campaign.

Despite his young age, Watts has already made over 100 appearances following previous EFL loan spells at Stevenage, Mansfield Town and Plymouth Argyle.

In a club statement released by the Magpies, it said head coach Eddie Howe has been “sufficiently impressed” by Watts, hence his decision to award him with a new contract.

‘I am buzzing’

Watts hinted at first-team involvement next season once he returns from his loan spell at the DW Stadium.

Indeed, Watts played for United in pre-season before being sent out on loan for a fourth time.

Speaking about his new deal, Watts said: “I’m absolutely delighted. I’ve been at the club since I was eight so I am buzzing to get a new contract.

“All my family are thrilled and I can’t wait to be working with the new manager next season.”

Watts has made 26 appearances in all competitions for the Latics this term as they eye automatic promotion from the third-tier.

Which other Newcastle players are out on loan in the EFL?

Newcastle hope Watts’ success can be repeated by a number of their young players currently on loan in the EFL.

Elliot Anderson has already caught the eye at Joey Barton’s Bristol Rovers, while Joe White is impressing at Hartlepool United.

Matty Longstaff is aiming to get his career back on track at League Two promotion-chasers Mansfield Town.

Meanwhile, Matthew Bondswell is on loan at Shrewsbury Town. Jack Young, a central midfielder, is with Wycombe Wanderers.