The FA Cup youngsters who grabbed their chance to shine
Alfie Devine sparkled for Spurs, Villa’s Louie Barry stole the show while Billy Gilmour looked at home in Chelsea’s midfield – the FA Cup starlets who grabbed their chances with both hands
- The FA Cup saw a number of Premier League youngsters handed an opportunity
- Alfie Devine, 16, became Tottenham’s youngest player and youngest goalscorer
- Frank Lampard says Billy Gilmour will have a more central role in the first-team
- Louie Barry scored against Premier League champions Liverpool for Aston Villa
- While Jayden Bogle, 20, showed Chris Wilder why he should be in his starting XI
The third round of the FA Cup provided an excellent opportunity for youngsters across the Premier League to show their worth.
Due to the hectic schedule of the 2020-2021 season and each club’s Covid-related absences, a barrage of youngsters were given the chance to establish their first-team credentials over the weekend.
However, only a handful of players were able to rise to the occasion and force managers to question their involvement within the first-team.
From Alfie Devine’s record-breaking performance for Tottenham, to Billy Gilmour’s comeback, Sportsmail have rounded up the four players that excelled in the third round of the FA Cup.
The FA Cup saw a number of Premier League youngsters handed an opportunity
Alfie Devine became Tottenham’s youngest player and youngest goalscorer on Sunday, when he found the net against Marine.
Jose Mourinho’s side were 4-0 up against their non-League opponents – who are ranked 161 below them – at half-time, before Devine added to the tally in the second half.
Devine put the final nail in the Marine coffin when he came off the bench to replace Moussa Sissoko at the start of the second half.
At 16 years and 163 days, the debutant took just 15 minutes to earn his first senior goal and close the game out at 5-0.
Alfie Devine (middle) became Spurs’ youngest player and youngest goalscorer on Sunday
He. latched onto Lucas Moura’s pass inside the box and fired it past keeper Bayleigh Passant
The former Wigan Athletic youngster latched onto Lucas Moura’s pass inside the box and fired it past keeper Bayleigh Passant from an unlikely angle.
Ian Wright and Alan Shearer were among those who praised the youngster for his effort – calling his goal a ‘brilliant finish’.
Although Devine is still developing, Mourinho believes the 16-year-old has ‘good potential’.
The Tottenham boss believes Devine has a remarkable level of tactical versatility at Spurs – describing him as a midfield player with an ‘instinct to appear in finishing zones and to score goals’.
During his time with the club’s U18 and U23 side, Devine has played as both an attacking and defensive midfielder.
However, the 16-year-old will have to work on his defensive principles to secure a place in Tottenham’s first XI – having previously been sent off for a two-footed challenge on Danny Drinkwater in December.
Devine will however have to work on his defensive principles to secure a place in Spurs’ first XI
Billy Gilmour was another player who grabbed the headlines after Chelsea’s FA Cup thrashing of Morecambe this weekend.
Gilmour, 19, made his fifth appearance for Chelsea this season as the Blues beat the League two side 4-0 on Sunday.
Following his impressive performance, Lampard hinted that Gilmour could be handed a more central role within the first-team.
Lampard said: ‘I think Billy is pushing [for a regular run in the first-team] and has been since he made his breakthrough last season against top-level opposition.
Gilmour, 19, made his fifth appearance this season as Chelsea beat Morecambe 4-0 on Sunday
Frank Lampard said Gilmour could be handed a more central role within the first-team
‘His injury came soon after that but from those moments I knew Billy would be a very, very good player for this club, to say the least.
‘Today, he came in, his attitude was good, he moved the ball well. When you talk about the academy players, people talk about the youth of this squad.
‘But also the youth of this squad are performing very well for us. We can’t ask them to be absolutely consistent and killers like other players in the league.
‘That will come but at the moment I think they’re own contributions are good.’
Lampard is hoping Gilmour will have another ‘breakthrough’ season at the club this year
In the week leading up to Aston Villa’s third-round FA Cup tie against the Premier League champions Liverpool, the club experienced an outbreak of coronavirus.
As a result, the hosts’ entire first-team squad and manager were unavailable for the game. While some of the U23s were also ruled out after training with the senior side.
Therefore Villa were forced to field a side that had no first-team experience between them.
However, 17-year-old Louie Barry took the opportunity to impress by scoring on his debut against Jurgen Klopp’s side.
Louie Barry took the opportunity to impress by scoring on his Aston Villa debut on Friday
The 17-year-old scored a low strike against Caoimhin Kelleher to level the score at half-time
Sadio Mane gave Liverpool the lead in the fourth minute, but Barry outmuscled Rhys Williams to get on the end of Callum Rowe’s pass and fire home an equaliser for Villa in the first half.
Despite slotting home a low strike against Caoimhin Kelleher to bring Dean Smith’s side level, Villa went on to lose the game 4-1 thanks to goals from Georginio Wijnaldum, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.
Regardless of the result, Barry – who was described by Villa chief executive Christian Purslow as ‘the best 16-year-old in England’ when he signed him from Barcelona in January – was the topic of conversation following the game.
Playing as a lone forward, Barry took on Fabinho early in the first half and went on an impressive run that resulted in a corner. As a result, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp referred to Barry as a ‘little Jamie Vardy’.
The England Under-17 international was also praised for his calm and composed nature by club captain Jack Grealish, who watched on from home.
Club captain Jack Grealish praised the youngster for his ‘composure’ in front of goal
Jayden Bogle grabbed the opportunity to shine against Bristol Rovers in the FA Cup on Saturday with both hands.
He delivered an energetic performance that saw him bursting into the opposition box on multiple occasions.
The 20-year-old also scored the late winner which saw Sheffield United beat Bristol Rovers 3-2.
Opportunities to feature in Chris Wilder’s side have, however, been restricted for Bogle as Sheffield typically play a 3-5-2 system.
Jayden Bogle scored the late winner which saw Sheffield United beat Bristol Rovers 3-2
His performance showed manager Chris Wilder why he should feature in his starting XI
As a result, Bogle has been edged out by George Baldock – who is regarded as a stalwart of the Wilder era.
Therefore, Bogle will have to look to occupy the right side of the midfield to force his way into the club’s starting XI.
Sheffield United have struggled for form on the right as John Lundstram is lacking the quality required to excel in such a position. While Sander Berge is expected to be out injured for at least four months.
Therefore, Bogle’s willingness to advance with the attack and occupy threatening positions within the box could be precisely what Wilder’s side need to achieve their first win in the Premier League – having not won in any games for six months.
Bogle delivered an energetic performance that saw him bursting into the opposition box
Share this article
Source: Read Full Article