Two years ago, practically nobody outside of Crystal Palace had heard of Aaron Wan-Bissaka; fast forward to the summer of 2019 and Manchester United have paid an initial fee of £45 million to take him away from the Eagles. Many of our supporters have taken the news hard but winger Andros Townsend has noticed something that is likely to provide real comfort to our fans moving forward.
The club’s academy set-up has always been famed for the regularly with which it churns out first-team ready youngsters, Wilfried Zaha and the aforementioned Wan-Bissaka being cases in point, meaning the performance of another youth product during Palace’s first pre-season game against FC Luzern on Tuesday raised more than a few eyebrows amongst supporters and players alike.
Now where have I seen that tackle before? 🤔 https://t.co/hlCFpDzxby
— Andros Townsend (@andros_townsend) July 10, 2019
Young full-back Tyrick Mitchell was part of the side that eventually ran out as shoot-out winners against their Swiss opponents and thanks to one particular tackle, Andros Townsend has alluded to the similarities that are already in place between the Palace youngster and Manchester United’s latest big-money recruit. It is of course extremely early days and it would be foolish to compare Mitchell to a player who took the English game by storm last season but as an isolated message from Andros, it was a tweet that did the trick with the Palace faithful.
You only need to look at the sort of money we’re receiving and asking for when it comes to our home-grown players to see the sense in ensuring the production line remains in place for the long-term. Whether you look to Mitchell, Sam Woods, Luke Dreher or Nya Kirby, it’s fair to say that the future of Palace’s youth development is looking bright.
Any young player who performs as well as Wan-Bissaka did over the last 18 months will always gain all sorts of attention from further afield. The key to our lasting success as a football club is to ensure that the pathway into our starting XI remains an attainable goal whilst making sure that any bids we get for them equate to value for money from our side of the negotiating table. Manage that and it’s fair to say that we’re sitting on a goldmine.