Hatters boss Nathan Jones saluted midfielder Alex Gilliead’s display at Notts County last weekend as the ‘best’ he’s seen from a League Two player.
Gilliead ran the show at times in the first half, driving from deep and almost cutting through the home defence with his incisive through balls.
We knew we’d get that type of performance from him and we’re delighted with him.Nathan Jones
Although he couldn’t have quite the same impact in the second period, Jones said: “From Alex Gilliead it’s probably one of the best performances I’ve seen from a League Two player.
“Until he ran out of steam at the end I thought he was absolutely outstanding, in terms of how he went about it with real, real quality.
“We knew we’d get that type of performance from him and we’re delighted with him.”
It wasn’t just Jones who was left drooling either, as centre half Johnny Mullins said: “I thought his performance was absolutely immense, I thought he just looked unbelievable, lovely to play and watch him.”
When told about the comments, a modest Gilliead added: “You can’t let them get to you too much.
“It’s obviously nice to hear it and it’s nice for people to say it, but I’ve got to keep my head down and keep working hard because I want to be in Newcastle’s first team.
“Putting in performances, like the manager says, I just need to keep doing that and getting recognised by the fans and from managers like Nathan.
“All the lads, staff and fans have been dead canny with me and all alright.
“Coming down here suits my type of play. Nathan wants to keep the ball, counter attack and go quick, so I’m enjoying it.”
Gilliead’s languid style on the ball and desire to run at the opposition has drawn comparisons to some former Newcastle greats like Chris Waddle and Paul Gascoigne.
When asked about the pair, he said: “I wasn’t around when they were playing but my uncle and my granddad have told me a lot about them.
“Peter Beardsley is my coach at Newcastle and I know what a class player he was.
“I just like to get the ball and run and I think a few Newcastle players used to do that, so it’s just the way I play.”