STEVE WATSON has said he is ready to show his faith in York City's youth after making two new signings ahead of tomorrow evening's pre-season outing at South Shields.

Former Academy players Rob Guilfoyle and Archie Whitfield were announced by the Minstermen after York's 4-1 behind-closed-doors friendly win at Newcastle United Under-23s.

The two new faces bring the squad total up to 17 for the restart of the National League North on October 3.

Guilfoyle, 18, scored two goals in Saturday's 4-1 victory, while last season's youth team captain Whitfield has signed his first professional contract with the club. He played the second half at Newcastle.

“I’m building up a really good squad of young lads to push those who are brought in to start," Watson told York's website. "I got my first start when I was 16 so if they look ready and they are performing – we have seven games pre-season – I won't be afraid to put them in."

A product of the York City Academy, Guilfoyle links up again with the Minstermen from Championship side Hull City. With the Tigers' U18s and U23s sides, Guilfoyle netted 50 times over the course of two seasons.

Watson said: "In stature, he looks quite a slight kid, but he’s gritty, has a good idea of where the ball is going to drop and is one of those who is right place right time strikers.

“There’s lots for him to learn and lots for him to improve on but scoring two goals against Newcastle on your first game with three days of training isn’t a bad start.”

In praise of the versatile Whitfield, Watson added: "Archie is someone who can play in two or three positions. His attitude is unbelievable, his energy and aggression – there is still room in the game for aggression.

“He’s a run-through-a-brick-wall type of lad and someone I want around the place.”

Olly Dyson and an unnamed trialist were also on the scoresheet as 22 players received a run-out against the Magpies.

Kick off at South Shields' 1st Cloud Arena is scheduled for 7.30pm.