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Press article:

McClen eyes switch - 27/05/2003

Newcastle midfielder Jamie McClen is resigned to the possibility of a move to rejuvenate his career. McClen has been hampered by a series of niggling injuries and made his last appearance, as a substitute, on 9 August last year. He has since seen manager Sir Bobby Robson bolster his engine room with 19-year-old Darren Ambrose and, in all probability, England international Lee Bowyer. And now the 24-year-old McClen is hoping a new club will come in for him in the summer.

"I have my ups and downs, and at times it's difficult to keep motivating yourself when all you can see is reserve team football," he said. "On the other hand, though, I'm at the club I supported as a lad and whenever I do leave St James', I know I'll have mixed emotions. "Whether a club comes in for me this summer and whether the gaffer will accept an offer, I really don't know. "But I look at my old mate David Beharall at Oldham and I have to admit to missing the excitement of first-team football."

McClen is fighting for his place alongside 10 established midfielders at St James' Park. Bowyer's six-game suspension from Europe at the beginning of Newcastle's Champions League campaign could provide a glimmer of hope for the home-grown player. But McClen admitted he had struggled to impress this season and could continue to be frozen out if he stays. "Whereas it's been a great season for the club, it's not been the best of seasons for me personally," he told The Journal. "I'll have to think about the new season and also to make preparations for next year. I've struggled to make an impact in the first team and had one or two injuries that have been difficult to shake off. "It was around this time last year that I signed my contract with Newcastle, and the season didn't pan out how I'd have liked it to. "The frustrating thing is that I may have got a few chances to play, but when those opportunities came around, I was injured."


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