Toon Debut Could Get Ranger Back On Focus

24 October 2010 01:13
Nile Ranger made his Premiership debut in the 86th minute of the Wigan game ... and he wants to put his 'Bad Boy' image behind him. Nile Ranger (talking to the Sunday Sun): “When I came on against Wigan, it was like a dream for me. “I never thought I’d make it to the Premier League that soon. “I know I’m not the finished article though. Last season, even though I was getting quite a few games, I wasn’t the best off the field. I was still doing silly things. “This season I have matured – I’ve seen the bigger picture and I’ve settled down. “I know I’ve had a lot of chances at a lot of clubs where it didn’t work out for me and I had to change. I got a lifeline coming to Newcastle when I did. I’ve got to make the most of it. “Some of the older lads I’ve looked up to. Kevin Nolan has spoken to me quite a lot, told me I need to be on point. Alan Smith is the same. Sol Campbell has as well - he has told me ‘Come on, you’ve got the ability, don’t waste it’. “But playing in the Premier League doesn’t really mean anything. I need to keep level-headed. “My background is a crazy background. It was scary. “Growing up my role models were bad people, people who did the wrong thing. Older lads who were in trouble mostly. I followed the wrong crowd who influenced me, I got in a bit of bother and I went to prison. “I say I regret it and I do but it taught me a lot of things - it was an experience that I will never forget. It made me certain that I never want to go back. “When I first moved here I tried to go to London every weekend. “That wasn’t good, there were still people there who could get me in trouble. But now I feel good here, Newcastle is home. “It has a different feel about it, a different atmosphere. I love it – apart from it’s freezing all the time! “The goal against Chelsea was an incredible feeling but to be honest it was more relief than anything because I cost us the first goal. But when I got in the dressing room then I just felt it. I realised I’d scored at Stamford Bridge. “I’m desperate to play against Arsenal. They were my team as a kid. “My first experience at Newcastle was sat on the bench at the Emirates and I was buzzing.”