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Toon youngster on regrouping after NUFC release

Ben Kitchen, 19, was released from the club’s academy this summer.

But he quickly found a new club as he moved to Croatian third tier side NK Novigrad. Speaking to Football Players Abroad about the move, he told them:

It’s always the dream growing up and making it to play first team football for the team you grew up playing for and supporting.

“So in that sense obviously it [being released] was disappointing, but I’m happy to move on and gain experience to carry on improving as a player. I think it is what I need at this stage.

“Obviously growing up as a Newcastle fan, I loved playing and growing as a player and person through the Newcastle academy. I was there from the age of six and I learned a lot from my time there on and off the pitch. I trained with the first team a handful of times last year too, which was a great experience to see what level you must try to get to.

“One game I most remember is playing at the Emirates against Jack Wilshere, Tomàš Rosicky and Serge Gnabry all in the same game. I played right back against Gnabry and he’d have to be the best winger I’ve played against, I couldn’t get near him!

“Kurtis Russell, who I’m good friends with and played with at Newcastle, got asked if he’d be interested in coming over [to Croatia] as well and we talked between us and decided we’d have nothing to lose.

“I’ve settled in quite well, I think. The club got us an apartment in the city which is good. We train everyday, get the odd day off but I don’t do much in my spare time, to be honest, just watch movies, listen to music, go for a coffee now and then and just rest really.”

Read the full interview with Kitchen here:

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