With the Crystal Palace first-team not giving supporters much to cheer about of late, Paddy McCarthy’s Under 18 side have provided a welcomed distraction and now, the club have uploaded a video which gives us all an insight into the individual players that Paddy has working under him this season.
💪 Positive attributes & playing style pic.twitter.com/fGa4vNVz4a
— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) September 29, 2017
Ask any Palace fan and they’ll tell you that the club prides itself on a reputation for bringing through young talent but since the rise to stardom of a certain Wilfried Zaha, we’ve been noticeably short of academy graduates who’ve made a noticeable impact on the first-team. Granted, our participation in the Premier League has almost certainly blocked a path for many of our brightest young stars but at U18 level, it looks as though Paddy has got a large number of lads who could end up making the grade.
Given our dismal start to the current campaign, I wouldn’t write off the possibility of Roy Hodgson throwing the likes of Sullay Kaikai and Jason Lokilo into the mix semi-regularly over the next few months but as you can see from the video attached above, the club has a number of potential first-team prospects on their hands who are still in their teenage years.
Whilst we would all have loved Frank de Boer’s tenure to have brought success over a number of years, his apparent desire to place faith in youth should be something we follow up on in the near and distant future. If this summer has taught us anything, it’s that large levels of spending on transfers seldom represent a sustainable long-term vision, whilst a fraction of that cost invested into your own youth ranks could and should reap huge rewards for decades.
Taking Wilfried Zaha as an isolated example, we now have a player on our books who is worth in excess of £40 million, brought into the side for an overall cost of £0 in transfer fees. When you factor in the connection fans feel towards him as a local lad, it seems like a no-brainer to try and replicate his rise over and over again within the youth ranks.
Paddy McCarthy was loyal servant to the club during his playing days and now, he’s shaping the careers of our next generation in impressive fashion.
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