Basford United prospect joins Newark FC on loan
Jordan Haywood says joining Newark FC is a “good step forward” in his career after completing an initial one-month loan move from Basford United.
The 17-year-old made his debut for the step five side in a 3-1 win over Eastwood Community on Tuesday night in the opening fixture of the United Counties League.
And whilst the former Mansfield Town and Scunthorpe United defender admits it’s a huge step up from his time at youth level, he says it was an experience he thoroughly enjoyed, despite coming around so quickly.
Haywood said: “The move came about so suddenly. I got told after training that Newark were interested in a loan for me - that was finalised at 11am and at 8pm I’m making my debut.
“But going into men’s football and learning a bit more than what I’m used to was good experience. It’s a bit more physical and I have to learn a slightly different style of play, which I like.
“Instead of playing a short pass as I might have done at Basford, with Newark I might have had to pump it long or turn a defender – it’s all down to their individual style and I’m enjoying learning about it all.
“I was up against Lavell White, a very tricky winger and felt I did okay,” he added. “Not knowing any of the lads was a bit of a task, but I’ve come in, settled down straight away and felt I grew into the game after a while.
“Both managers, Stephen (Kirkham) and Craig (Roache), came up to me as soon as I arrived and made me feel welcome, as did the captain (Danny Meadows) and they all told me of their interest which already made me feel confident.
“It’s good step forward in my career and senior football is something I need to learn now and hopefully the opportunity I have at Newark, with a bit more experience under my belt, will help with that development.”
On the move, Basford boss Steve Chettle said: “We spoke to Jordan on Monday when I got a phone call from Stephen Kirkham at Newark saying that they were after somebody that can play left-back. They specifically asked for him and he’ll learn a lot from this.”
“Jordan is a player we can rely on should we ever need to call on him in the future, but to go out and play senior football, week in, week out for the short-term is important.
“After however long it will be, we’ll bring him back and see where we are with him. He’s on a dual registration, so we can bring him back whenever we need to.
“We have Ryan (Wilson) and we have Dom (Roma) so we do have people that can play at left-back, but it gives Jordan an opportunity to go and enjoy himself for a few weeks and get that exposure to men’s football,” he concluded.
“He has had a fantastic pre-season with us. He’s played against Nottingham Forest and Mansfield Town, held his own and I think he’ll be fine at Newark.
“Jordan’s very level-headed character. I’ve just watched a bit of his debut and he doesn’t look out of place; he’s ordering people around because that’s the kind of person and player he is.
“He’s really well organised, he’s a great student in our Education Academy and he understands the game and understands what is involved to improve – he’ll be fine.”
United’s final pre-season fixture is on Saturday, August 7 at Nuneaton Borough before their first Northern Premier League fixture against Scarborough Athletic a week later.