Frank Nouble: ‘They are using weapons instead of using their brains’

first_img Newport County forward Nouble celebrates scoring earlier this season. Photograph: Simon Davies/ProSports/REX/Shutterstock Read more Pinterest Football Share on Messenger Share on LinkedIn Newport County Facebook “No matter how talented they were, no one has made it at Chelsea. It’s up to you to make it happen for yourself,” he says. “I’ve travelled a lot. From the outside, people might see that many clubs and think I’m not good enough but it’s just the way things have worked out.“I’m enjoying it here and we’ll see what happens. I’m settled but football can change any time so I will just have to make the right decision for me and my family.” features “This knife and gun crime recently in London GOTTA STOP!” he wrote. “I lost a close friend to this innocent person in cross fire… life itself is hard already got one chance at it. We must encourage each other to do and be better. Kids out here need the guidance. Life can be great if we live it.”Two more murders the following day took the number of people killed on London’s streets this year to above 50, prompting last week’s summit when the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, met the home secretary, Amber Rudd, and the Metropolitan police commissioner, Cressida Dick, to discuss how to tackle the surge in serious crime. But Nouble, who grew up in Deptford, believes that the police need more support from society at large.“Stop and search is one thing but they need to work harder to prevent these attacks,” he says. “We need to see more patrols in the areas where this is happening. Everyone just seems to think they can get away with it.“When I was younger, you would be scared to even think about carrying something because we were always told you are more likely to get attacked if you have a weapon. But that mentality has changed.“People are using anything as a weapon these days, so it’s difficult to say what should be done,” Nouble adds. “The younger generation has a different mentality but I don’t think that is entirely their fault. When I was younger, there was a lot more community things going on and less technology. If you wanted to see your mate you would have to go and knock for him at his house whereas now everything is online. The first thing they look for is their phone, but for me and my friends it was our football.“Kids aren’t doing what they should be doing – I’ve got a younger brother who is 11 and he is on his phone and PlayStation more than I have ever been. It prevents them from using their own minds – they are using weapons instead of using their brains.”Remarkably, Nouble is not the only member of Newport’s squad to have lost someone they know to the violence. The forward Marlon Jackson was friends with Abraham Badru – a 26-year-old who played for Bristol amateur side Almondsbury and was shot dead in Dalston last week.“Nowadays it seems to happen so much more – someone gets killed and 10 days later you have forgotten their name,” says Nouble. “The media should be talking about it more and trying to get the public to help. Rather than everyone just saying how terrible it is and then moving on to the next story, we need to try to find a solution.”Having joined Newport on a one-year contract last summer, Nouble faces a big decision: whether to remain at the League Two club next season or continue on his nomadic path. The season he spent with Tianjin Quanjian in 2014-15 remains by far the most exotic destination he has chosen so far since rejecting Chelsea’s offer of a professional contract and joining West Ham at the age of 17 because he was concerned about his prospects of playing first-team football. Topics Killed in 2018: London’s victims of violence Share on Facebook “The last time I saw Rio was a few weeks before in the summer when I went to play at the Damilola Taylor centre in Peckham,” says Frank Nouble. “Everyone who we used to play with was there – John Bostock, Mustapha Carayol, Daniel Johnson and a few others who went on to make it as pros. He came over before the game and gave me a Ribena because that’s the type of person that he was. A couple of days later, I heard what had happened.”Nearly eight years since the promising young striker Rio McFarlane was killed after being caught in the crossfire between two feuding gangs in south London, the latest outbreak of violence on the capital’s streets brought the bad memories rushing back for the Newport County forward Nouble. A member of the Aspire football academy, the 18-year-old McFarlane had already turned out for Dulwich Hamlet and was tipped to follow in the footsteps of his talented school friends, many of whom – like Nouble – have gone on to enjoy lengthy professional careers. Share via Email Nowadays it seems to happen so much more – someone gets killed and 10 days later you have forgotten their nameFrank Nouble Share on Twitter Share on WhatsApp Share on Pinterest Twitter Instead, a single gunshot fired from a submachine gun struck McFarlane in the chest and he died two hours later after paramedics failed to resuscitate him. Rio Ferdinand, who had grown up on the same streets and was a friend of McFarlane’s older brother Anthony, was among those to appeal for information to find his killer. Leon Pacquette was eventually sentenced to 35 years in prison for his murder in 2014.“He was in the wrong place at the wrong time,” says Nouble. “When I got the news I had a game the next day for West Ham’s reserves. It was a real shock to the system because we were all so close. He epitomised the friendship that we all had – everyone just wanted to play football. After that, we all stayed at home because nobody wanted to get caught in the crossfire.”Nouble, 26, has racked up almost 200 league appearances since he was a highly rated prospect in Chelsea’s youth academy. His career has taken him to all four of England’s professional leagues and a shortlived stint in China. Now settled in south Wales at his 17th club – including loans – it was the murder of the teenager Tanesha Melbourne-Blake in Tottenham last week that prompted him to speak out on Twitter. Reuse this contentlast_img

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