Zimbabwean forward Michael Ndiweni has signed his first professional contract with English Premier League side Newcastle United.
The 18-year-old was offered the deal last month following an impressive campaign with the Newcastle United Academy. He scored 14 times in 19 matches at the under-18 level last season, recording three goals during the young Magpies’ FA Youth Cup campaign.
His performance caught the eye of coach Eddie Howe, and the youngster was called up to train with the senior team in March.
Ndiweni signed the contract in the presence of his family.
“It’s a proud moment for myself, my family and friends because it’s something I’ve been working for ever since I arrived at the club,” the young forward said after signing the deal.
“That was the number one goal – to live my dream of becoming a professional footballer for my boyhood club. My friends and family support Newcastle, so it’s a good feeling saying you are a professional footballer at the club all your friends and people in the area support.
“Up until my injury, last season was one of the best I’ve had. I scored regularly for the under-18s, trained with the first team and was involved with the under-23s, so I think I made good progress throughout the year.”
Ndiweni, who joined United’s youth set-up in 2016 from Newcastle City Juniors, picked an injury in May and went on to miss the remaining seven games of the season.
The teenager was born in England to Zimbabwean parents and is eligible to play for Zimbabwe. His father coaches youth football in Newcastle.