Written by Daniel Blazer for FootballFancast.com: Marc Albrighton, Daniel Sturridge and Theo Walcott; these names are just a small example of the young talent that is on show in the Premier League. Even so, such are the talents of the youngsters in the league that the three mentioned above will probably not make it onto the PFA’s shortlist.
Seamus Coleman has been a rare highlight in an otherwise rather dismal season for Everton; the defender’s performances have been solid and consistent, even if Everton’s position doesn’t represent this, with the Republic of Ireland handing Coleman his first cap in the 3-0 win over Wales. The young Irish international’s performances have, of course, caught the eye of the ‘bigger’ clubs in the Premier League, which is why after being voted the club’s player of the month in November, Coleman was offered (and promptly signed) a new four and a half year deal with the club. With the likes of Cahill and now Jack Rodwell especially surrounded by a media frenzy, it is a shame for Seamus Coleman that he isn’t getting the credit he deserves; but with Rodwell heavily linked to Manchester United, Coleman could see next season bring him untold success.
For Andy Carroll to make the shortlist after having several months out injured is a major feat in itself. The Liverpool hitman warrants his place on here for his time at Newcastle United, where Carroll received plaudits for being an ‘old fashioned’ centre forward; strong, powerful in the air and a nightmare for defenders and goalkeepers alike. The performances of Carroll in the early months of the season earned an England call up and Fabio Capello was extremely impressed with the burly hitman. Carroll will more than likely miss out on the award due to having such a long time out injured, but this didn’t stop Liverpool spending £35 million on the striker despite having just returned to fitness for his new club; the signs were particularly promising for Carroll against Sunderland and he should enjoy a successful and potent career alongside Luis Suarez for the Reds under the guidance of “King Kenny”.
Rafael da Silva, Manchester United’s young Brazilian right back, has blistering pace, fantastic composure on the ball and, combined with his defensive abilities, this has become an integral part in helping Vidic, Ferdinand and Smalling maintain the back line that, at one point looked like going the whole season unbeaten. Rafael shows a certain Brazilian instinct when moving forward with the ball, which is a dream for the likes of Nani, Park and now the returning Valencia, as the young Brazilian regularly feeds the wingers delightful balls down the line. As always at United, the youth promise exciting times and Rafael, along with twin brother Fabio, are leading the way.
‘The Little Pea’, Chicharito or Javier Hernandez; whatever you decide to call him, one thing is for certain that the little Mexican has been a saving grace for the Red Devils after a hugely controversial and relatively disappointing season for Wayne Rooney. For someone so small in stature, Hernandez has been creating big headlines over at Old Trafford, whether it his phenomenal pace, amazing goals to shots on target ratio or just his obvious love for the beautiful game. Hernandez is now what can only be described as Ferguson’s ‘go-to man’, when United need something different to ensure victory or to kill off a game, you can be certain the Mexican international will be Fergie’s first port of call and as of yet has not disappointed.
Gareth Bale is in a Tottenham Hotspur team that is rich in talent, so for someone so young to steal away the headlines from the likes of Luka Modric and Rafael van der Vaart is an impressive achievement. Bale has truly come into his own as a player in this season. The 21-year-old Welshman scored a phenomenal hat trick in Tottenham’s Champions League debut against Inter Milan and continued to impress with two assists in the return game at White Hart Lane. Bale has been essential in Spurs maintaining their chances in breaking the top four for a second year running and has the potential to develop into a top player, if he isn’t that already.
Jack Wilshere; only 19 years old and yet in his breakthrough season at Arsenal, has played for the England national team and made himself a prominent figure in the centre of the park for the Gunners. With passion, desire and creativity, Wilshere has demonstrated his ability and versatility to play both offensively and in a holding role to help the Gunners’ suspect defence; lauded by, amongst others, Arsene Wenger, Owen Coyle and Fabio Capello in the process. Wilshere’s consistent performances this season have had numerous fans and critics comparing his impact to Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and David Beckham when they burst onto the scene at Old Trafford. A comparison that surely only a Premier League Young Player of the Season can achieve? We shall see.
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