Gary and Phil Neville, Kolo and Yaya Touré, Ronald and Frank de Boer, Andre and Jordan Ayew.

All well known brothers to fans of British football, but soon the names on everyone’s lips may be Sean and Matty Longstaff.

Born and raised in North Shields, the flame-haired siblings continue to be recipients of high praise this season – and not without good reason.

Whilst 22-year-old Sean Longstaff has respective loan spells at Blackpool and Kilmarnock to thank somewhat for his now cemented first-team spot, brother Matty’s rise to prominence was very much of the sudden nature, after fellow countryman Isaac Hayden saw red in Newcastle’s 5-0 drumming away at highflyers Leicester.

Allow me to cast your mind back to Sunday 6 October. Not only would teenager Matty be handed a full league debut, but net the only goal of the game in scintillating fashion, as he latched onto Jetro Willems’ pass to drill a 20-yard effort past the helpless David de Gea (at the Gallowgate End for good measure).

And many were quick to point out the almost contagious effect of Longstaff Jr. on his partner in crime that day, the eldest seemingly gaining a whole new lease of life against Manchester United following a string of under-par performances.

Both would display maturity beyond their years as the Toon by no means disgraced themselves in a narrow defeat to Chelsea; Sean’s reckless challenge on Ruben Neves of Wolves perhaps the only real sign of inexperience thus far.

They’re not the first set of brothers to have donned the famous black and white, either.

Shola Ameobi bagged 53 goals across 14 years of service on Tyneside, (how that figure isn’t higher I’ll never know) and is widely considered a cult hero among the Geordie faithful. Younger brother, Sammy, meanwhile flattered to deceive a little; registering just two senior strikes. 

With a mere 20 combined appearances, it would be remiss and frankly premature to make any firm judgement on the Longstaffs just yet. Sure, these two aren’t the finished article, and it’s largely up to Steve Bruce to ensure their development kicks on in the same manner. But I know I speak for Magpies fans far and wide when I say “they’ll do for me”.



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