Elliot Anderson delivers blow to Bristol Rovers by stating Newcastle United intentions

A return to Bristol Rovers may be unlikely for Elliot Anderson as he tries to plead his case that he’s already Premier League ready

Elliot Anderson has delivered a blow to Bristol Rovers by stating his intentions to remain at Newcastle United.

The 19-year-old has featured for the Magpies in pre-season and held his own in the first-team.

Anderson had started on the bench in the 1-0 defeat to Mainz having also played against Gateshead and 1860 Munich.

There are opportunities for Anderson to stake a claim with matches against major European opposition in Benfica, Atalanta and Athletic Club.

But he remains a wanted man by a host of Championship clubs, as well as Rovers and Sheffield Wednesday, whilst Scottish Premiership side Hearts have now joined the race to sign him.

“I want to be here,” said Anderson to Newcastle World and the Shields Gazette whilst out on tour in Austria.

“I want to force my way into the team, but, I guess, that’s the club’s decision. I’ve just got to work as hard as I can on the pitch, and see what happens.

“I think it’s been really good for me, just trying to fit into the team, work on the way they play and try and impress.

“I just want to try and carry on the momentum I had (on loan). Obviously, it’s a lot higher standard, but I need to try and take what I did well (on loan) into these pre-season games.”

Ultimately, the decision will lie with manager Eddie Howe on whether he will be a part of the first-team squad at St James Park this season.

As Anderson is under the age of 21 and is a homegrown talent, he does not need to be registered as part of the 25-man squad, which means there are spaces for other signings.

Newcastle have yet to bring in a midfielder that plays in the same positions as the teenager which could show they are ready to give him a chance.

A time frame of three weeks was mooted by The Athletic a fortnight ago, as Anderson would have had multiple games to stake his claim.

As to where he is currently at, the Newcastle boss says a decision has yet to be made but that he is holding his own, against some high-profile teammates.

Howe said: "Nothing’s clear at this point. He’s in and around the group. "He’s not looking out of place. "In that company, that’s saying something.

"We’ll do what’s best for us and Elliot. When I say us I mean the team and the club. "I think if we feel he’ll play minutes, we’ll keep him. "If he won’t play and contribute, we’ll loan him."