Whilst the senior Spurs team impress in Barcelona, some of the younger up and coming players in the academy have matched their senior’s progress. Some of these players are exciting, showing lots of promise so early in their development. Pochettino may not have been able to benefit from any summer transfers. But, Pochettino can instead cultivate his younger players to help fill the gaps of the ageing and defunct elements in the squad.
Troy Parrott scored as Tottenham’s under-19’s beat Barcelona 2-0. This continued a meteoric rise of this young Irish attacker, who trained with the first team whilst at Camp Nou. He was deployed as the sole striker in a 4-2-3-1 formation, already able to lead the line by himself. However, he is not just stuck up top on his own to score goals; he was also efficient in bringing his team-mates into the game, working especially well with Edmond-Paris Maghoma and Jack Roles.
It’s important to remember that Parrott is only 16-years-old and yet already getting involved with the first team. Now, under the youth promoting regime this shouldn’t be entirely surprising. Indeed, this should be a norm to involve the youngest players in first team training sessions. After all, if a manager wishes to sustain his project in terms of philosophy and playing style, he must inculcate the younger players.
Making his Premier League debut against Southampton, Skipp has made a similar sharp rise in fortunes. This owes partly to the unfortunate injury to Luke Amos. Nevertheless, Skipp has seized his opportunity and made a competent cameo appearance from the 87th minute.
Skipp is exciting to watch, who is not afraid to make forward runs with the ball, or to press the opposition when not in possession. In terms of his physicality, he is of average height and a small stature. Nevertheless, he is capable of putting his body in between ball and opponent and will fight to stay in possession. His playing style has some similarities to Harry Winks, with many of the observations above also applying to him too. There is a bit more directness and flair, though, in Skipp’s game, who would probably be most effective in a more advanced position. His pre-season performances against AC Milan and Barcelona all point to his sparkling ability. Now his progress must continue with Pochettino’s careful tuition.
As aforementioned, Luke Amos suffered a terrible injury. He is recovering from knee ligament damage in an under-23’s match against Blackburn. It brings his 2018/9 season to a close, after grabbing a first-team debut at Newcastle early in the season. Amos will have to battle to come back and resume his progress next year. This is a really unfortunate affair since he really was on the verge of getting more involved in the first team. With injuries to the likes of Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele and the poor form of other midfielders like Eric Dier, Amos had a great chance to break through.
He has the capabilities for sure. Pochettino could deploy him as a deeper lying midfielder, with the ability to start attacks from deep. Amos is also capable of the more combative parts of the midfield game. At 21, he is older than Skipp and especially Parrott and will need to ensure a full recovery. However, with the recent example of players like Ryan Mason for Spurs, there is always time to recover from any long-term injury and to mount another attempt to reach the first team again.