STAGS SIGN KELLAND WATTS ON LOAN FROM NEWCASTLE
Defender joins on loan
mansfieldtown.net, 28 January 2020, 5pm
Mansfield Town is delighted to announce the signing of versatile Newcastle United defender Kelland Watts on loan until the end of April.
The 20-year-old joined the Magpies’ academy in 2008, signing his first professional contract with the club in the summer of 2018.
Watts appeared in all 41 of Newcastle under-23s’ matches in the 2018/19 season, scoring on six occasions from the back.
Following this, the defender was included in Newcastle’s matchday squad for their final Premier League game of last season, a 4-0 win away at Fulham.
Ahead of this season, he made his first team debut for the Magpies in their pre-season 2019 Premier League Asia Trophy clash against Wolverhampton Wanderers, before signing on loan for Stevenage in August 2019.
The day after signing at Lamex Stadium, Watts made his debut for the Boro, keeping a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw against Leyton Orient.
He made 20 appearances for Stevenage in all competitions this term, helping towards seven clean sheets, before being recalled by Newcastle earlier this month.
Since being recalled, the defender made the matchday squad for Newcastle’s Premier League match against Wolves on Saturday 11 January, being listed among the substitutes.
Watts, who can play in defence or midfield, has also made two appearances for England under-19s.
Manager Graham Coughlan said: “Kelland is a player who can play in numerous positions. He can play centre-half in a two or a three, he can sit in front [of the defence] or he can go in at left-back.
“He is technically very good. He’s big, strong and suits the division. I would say his best position is centre-half, but if he needs to, he’s comfortable in front of the back four.
“He knows what the division is about and he’s young, fit and hungry. He has a desire, work rate and attitude, which is exactly what we’re looking to build here at this football club.”
Newcastle United defender Kell Watts is third Mansfield Town January transfer arrival
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas, Tuesday, 28th January 2020, 4:59 pm
Mansfield Town today signed Newcastle United centre half Kell Watts on loan until the end of April - and boss Graham Coughlan said there may be more comings and goings before Friday's January transfer deadline.
The Watts signing followed Saturday's arrival of former Plymouth defender Joe Riley, but Watts is unlikely to be involved at Oldham Athletic tonight.
The 20-year-old has already had an excellent spell at League Two rivals Stevenage this season and Coughlan said of the former England U19 international: “He is a player that first came on our radar when he was playing with the U23s at Newcastle - and I've liked what I have seen.
“He then went out on loan at Stevenage where he really excelled in numerous positions for them.
“He has since gone back to Newcastle and we felt it was too good an opportunity to miss.”
Versatile loanee Conor Shaughnessy was recently recalled by Leeds United and Coughlan said: “Having lost young Shaughnessy as well, that left a bit of a void.
“But Kelland is a player who can play numerous positions. He can play centre half in a two or three, he can sit in front, or he can play left back.
“He is technically very good. He is big, strong, solid and mobile and suits the division. He covers 10-11k a game, he is tidy on the ball and he's fresh.
“He has a hunger, a desire, a work rate and an attitude - exactly what we're looking to build here.
“I would prefer to play him as a centre half, but if he needs to, he is comfortable to 'polyfill'. He has a hunger, a desire, a work rate and an attitude exactly what we're looking to build here.
“He should fit into the changing room really well. Let's see if we can bring his game on to another level. We are delighted to have him on board.
“Having him should bring another 5-10 per cent from our current defenders as he will add a bit of competition. His flexibility will help too.”
Kelland is January signing number three and Coughlan said: “If we can get another player in then great. If we don't I won't lose any sleep.
“We are actively looking, but it always has to be the right player for us who fits into our ethos.
“Last Friday I would have said we needed 11, but I woke up on Sunday morning and I was saying none, such is the rollercoaster of emotions in football.
“I have said since I came in I am more than happy to work with the group of players I have in here.
“The owners have been excellent and supportive. If I felt I needed another one I am sure they would back us.
“But the group we have here have bought into what we want. They are working hard and they are improving all the time in fitness levels and performances.”
Watts joins Mansfield Town on loan
Newcastle United defender Kell Watts has joined Mansfield Town on loan for the rest of the 2019/20 season.
The 20-year-old, who made his first-team debut for the Magpies in their Premier League Asia Trophy clash against Wolverhampton Wanderers in July, has linked up with Graham Coughlan's side and will remain at Field Mill for the remainder of the 2019/20 campaign.
Watts - an England under-19 international - spent the first half of the season on loan at Stevenage, making 20 appearances in all competitions, before returning to United after suffering a knee injury in the Boro's Emirates FA Cup tie against Peterborough United in November.
The former Ponteland High School pupil, who can play in midfield as well as defence, was then recalled from his spell at the Lamex Stadium and was named on the bench for United's Premier League trips to Wolves and Everton.
Watts could be line to make his Mansfield debut tonight as the Stags travel to Oldham Athletic (kick-off 7.45pm GMT).
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