Gateshead clinch loan signing of Blackburn Rovers starlet

Gateshead have clinched the loan signing of rising Blackburn Rovers star Andy Haworth and the 20 year old goes straight into the squad for Saturday's Blue Square Premier game at second top Stevenage Borough.

Lancaster-born Haworth is a regular in Blackburn's reserve side and made his first team debut last season where he made two appearances.

Both were against Sunderland, in the FA Cup and Carling Cup, and Gateshead have beaten Stockport County and Wrexham for the talented winger's loan signature.

"Haworth is a player we have monitored for awhile," said manager Ian Bogie "we have had him watched on three occasions and he has been outstanding.

"He can play on either flank but is primarily a right sided player. He will be in the squad at Stevenage but cannot play at Brentford on Tuesday as Blackburn do not want him to become cup-tied."

Gateshead could be unchanged for Saturday's game against Stevenage at Broadhall Way as they look to improve a record of just one defeat in six games against a side that has lost only once in the league this season.

Central defender Chris Swailes completes his three match ban but there will be no return to the 16 for striker Steven Richardson who missed the whole of October with an ankle injury.

"Richardson made his comeback in the friendly at Chester-le-Street Town in midweek but struggled and had to be taken off at half-time," added Bogie.

"That is disappointing but apart from Speedy and the long term injured Martin Brittain we have a clean bill of health as we look to kick on after several good performances.

"Stevenage and ourselves need points for different reasons and both sides have important FA Cup replays against League clubs on Tuesday.

"The Blue Square Premier however is our bread and butter.  We will be fully focussed on Saturday, and if we come away from Broadhall Way unscathed I will be delighted."

By Jeff Bowron