Jamie Clark relishing unexpected opportunity to impress at Blyth Spartans

Young forward Jamie Clark is relishing the unexpected opportunity he has been handed at Blyth Spartans.

By Mark Carruthers
Friday, 11th December 2020, 12:45 pm
Young Blyth Spartans forward Jamie Clark in action against Boston United. (Photo credit: Steve Betts)
Young Blyth Spartans forward Jamie Clark in action against Boston United. (Photo credit: Steve Betts)

The Tyne Metropolitan College student is part of the Spartans under-19s setup and has gained senior experience with Northern League Division One club North Shields.

But injuries to Spartans attacking duo Connor Thomson and Paul Blackett handed the youngster an unexpected National League North debut when his side travelled to Kettering Town last weekend.

Despite his side falling to a 2-1 defeat, Clark put in a confident display and did enough to convince Spartans manager Michael Nelson to keep him in the side for the midweek home game against Boston United.

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Clark was one of the positives to come out of his side’s fourth consecutive defeat and he revealed that he is confident that he can adjust to playing at a higher level after a tough introduction to life in the National League North.

He said: “I have loved the experience and I have loved the experience of playing with a great bunch of lads too.

“It is a different experience to playing for the college or playing in the Northern League with North Shields, but it is one that I am enjoying.

“It’s a few levels above what I am used to, and it will take some adjusting to the differences.

“The game is a lot quicker; you have to pass the ball quicker and take fewer touches.

“I am confident that I can do it at this level, and I know it’s going to be difficult for a 19-year-old.

“I am positive, I am patient, and I know it’s the highest league I have played in.

“But I am learning, and I will keep trying to improve.”

Clark praised the impact that Spartans manager Nelson has made on his fledgling career.

The former Hartlepool United defender also oversees the club’s under-19s side and had no qualms about handing Clark his first senior call-up after being impressed with his attitude and performances at that level.

As the young forward prepares to make his third senior appearance at Brackley Town on Saturday, he revealed his belief that Nelson commands respect for what he has achieved during his long playing career.

“The manager has been a role model for me so far.

“He has a great attitude, he always tells us to work hard, it’s the same with the college side.

“He tells us what to do and we listen to him because we have that respect for what he has done in the game.

“He’s great for us to look up to.”