Why Hull City’s move for James Berry could be beneficial for the future
According to Hull Live, Hull City have negotiated a compensation deal with Wigan Atheltic to complete the signing of teenager forward James Berry, who has put pen to paper on a contract until the end of the ongoing season.
Given that Berry never put pen to paper on professional terms at the DW Stadium, Wigan were only entitled to a small compensation fee for overseeing his development in their academy setup, and Hull City have moved quickly to snap up the talented starlet.
The 18-year-old, who had previously been on the books of Liverpool before his move to Wigan in December 2016, is set to further his development with Jon Beale’s U-23 squad in the Professional Development League in the coming months, with the Tigers holding the option to extend his stay by a further twelve months.
Berry never made a senior professional appearance for the Latics in the Championship but he was a regular for them at the U-18 level and also featured in the FA Youth Cup.
The highly-rated 18-year-old has been regarded by many as a player with the potential to go on and ply his trade at the highest level and Hull U-23 coach seems to be excited with his arrival at the club.
As per the report from Hull Live, Beale has profiled James Berry as a striker with a lot of pace and a deadly eye for goal who can play up top as a No.9, and also in a No.10 role behind a centre-forward.
To put things into perspective, James Berry is still very much in the developmental stage of his career as a footballer and while his arrival is not expected to have any impact on Hull City’s promotion surge in the Championship, the Tigers could potentially have a gem on their hands in the years to come if he goes on to fulfil his promise.
The news of Berry’s acquisition comes just a month after the Tigers secured the future of academy prospect Callum Jones with a new long-term deal following his rapid progress in the youth ranks.
Jones only joined Hull City this summer from Bury FC but he has done enough to earn a new contract and Berry could have his stay extended if he manages to impress the coaching staff with his development.
Highly-rated emerging prospects like Danny Lupano and Lucas Odunston came through the door at the KCOM Stadium from Birmingham City and Leeds United respectively in the summer, and the acquisition of James Berry is yet another step that highlights the club’s renewed faith in blooding young talent and polishing them into quality professionals.
Yet to make a professional appearance for any club, Berry still has a long way to go in his development but with the pathway from the academy to the first-team very much open under the stewardship of Grant McCann, as evident from the rise of left-back Brandon Fleming, the 18-year-old could well be the next poster boy from the club’s youth system.
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All in all, the fans have every reason to hold high hopes of James Berry in the years to come and this looks like a move that could pay off handsomely for the Tigers moving forward.