MINNOWS Gateshead are hoping to tap into the wealth of young stars on offer at Newcastle United and Sunderland in a bid to boost their squad.
The Tynesiders have had a number of players from the two big boys come to them on loan in recent seasons, and boss Gary Mills is hopeful of that policy continuing.
The Magpies, in particular, have a strong relationship with their neighbours, with the likes of Paul Dummett, James Tavernier and Jak Alnwick enjoying fruitful spells at the International Stadium.
Asked if he is keen to maintain the mutually-beneficial arrangement, Mills said: “Yeah, absolutely.
“Make no mistake, we’re tucked away up here in the North East and it can be hard to get players to come.
“So it’s a strength, to me, to have Newcastle, Sunderland and Middlesbrough close by.
“Without mentioning names, we have tried to get a couple of players from the big teams up here. It’s not happened so far but they’ve not ruled it out, absolutely not.”
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is keen to send youngsters out on loan, and the likes of Curtis Good, Remie Streete and Adam Campbell could be targets for Gateshead.
Mills added: “You have to be very careful about which players you do bring in, you have to get the right ones.
“We can’t get carried away just because it’s Newcastle, it’s Sunderland, it’s Middlesbrough, and think their players must be better than what we’ve got here, because that’s not always the case.
“But if you get the right ones, as much as they can be good for us, I think they have to realise how good we can be for them as well.
“I know Peter Beardsley knows how good this level is, and how I like my teams to play. That’s why he likes players to come and play for my teams, because we do it the right way.”