SA junior back in the picture at Premier League team

08 February 2019 - 10:25
By Nick Said
South African junior international Tyrique Bartlett.
Image: INSTAGRAM/Tyrique Bartlett South African junior international Tyrique Bartlett.

South African junior international Tyrique Bartlett has made a welcome return to action with the Under-23 side of English Premier League Newcastle United after an absence of almost 10 months.

The son of Bafana Bafana legend Shaun Bartlett came off the bench for the final 11 minutes in a Northumberland Senior Cup game this week to end a nightmare spell on the sidelines.

Bartlett return to training late last month having previously played an official game for Newcastle against FC Porto U-23s on April 12 last year.

The 19-year-old will now look to make up for lost time having made good progress at Newcastle before his absence‚ when he was asked to train with manager Rafa Benitez’s first team on a number of occasions.

His return came too late to be considered for Thabo Senong’s squad at the current Caf Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations in Niger.

Having been called into action before‚ through‚ he remains on the radar of Safa and could play a role for the SA U-23s in the qualifiers for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year.

Bartlett joined Newcastle from the youth academy at the University of Pretoria‚ where father Shaun was the head coach‚ in January 2017.

The tall forward‚ who was born in Switzerland while Shaun was playing for FC Zurich‚ will hope that a run of games to the end of the season takes him closer to a first team place for the 2019-20 season.