The Football League consistently provides young players with a massive opportunity to showcase their talents. Here are five that have caught the eye this season.
Tammy Abraham (Bristol City, on loan from Chelsea)
The England under-21 international has been a revelation since arriving at Bristol City in the summer. Standing tall at 6’4″, he asserts an intimidating presence up front; his nine goals in sixteen games make him the Championship’s second top goalscorer. Like many Chelsea loanees, while he may not make the first team as of yet, there may be room for him elsewhere in the Premier League.
Ryan Kent (Barnsley, on loan from Liverpool)
This Liverpool youngster has been an integral part of an exciting Barnsley team this season as one of the main attacking threats in the side. Operating just behind the striker, his style of play seems suited to that of the current Liverpool team, which has been taking the Premier League by storm.
Speaking to Barnsley’s club website, Kent recently stated: “I’m really enjoying my time here at Barnsley. It’s a club that can give me an opportunity to play in the Championship and challenge myself, up against some top teams with top players and give myself a chance to show what I’m really capable of.”
Sam Gallagher (Blackburn Rovers, on loan from Southampton)
Blackburn Rovers’ campaign has been a miserable one, but one positive has been the form of Sam Gallagher. The 21-year-old has shown glimpses of his talent in the Premier League with 18 appearances in 2013-14, but since then, opportunities have been limited. At Rovers, he has become a key player in the team and has thrived. Such is his form that calls have been made for him to return to Southampton.
John Swift (Reading)
The former Chelsea man has thrived since making the switch to Madejski from Brentford. Described on his wiki as a “box-to-box player who is technically gifted with an eye for goal”, he has been the catalyst behind Reading’s promotion push under Jaap Stam. Like many other youngsters who have been knocked to the wayside by big clubs, he is showing all the necessary signs to return to the top.
Harry Chapman (Sheffield United, on loan from Middlesbrough)
One of the best young talents to come out of the infamous Boro academy in recent years, Chapman is now beginning to make a name for himself at Sheffield United. A hat-trick in the FA Cup against Leyton Orient served as a testament to the sort of player he is growing into. With the Blades on course to chase the automatic promotion places, he could ultimately be the difference.