Why Man City should look at Andrew Ijiwole as one for the future
According to claims from All Nigeria Soccer, Man City have handed a trial to highly-rated Huddersfield Town winger Andrew Ijiwole, with a view to a potential transfer during the mid-season trading period in January.
The 17-year-old had caught the eye while playing for Huddersfield Town’s U-17s against Man City’s age-group side in a friendly in 2018 and they are now set to assess the talented winger at close quarters.
Ijiwole made a substitute appearance in Man City’s 4-1 rout of Stoke City in the U-18 Premier League on Friday and U-18 manager Gareth Taylor is set to run the rule over the talented teenager in the coming days.
The starlet is still a trialist at Man City and any decision to offer him a permanent deal would depend on how he fares in the U-18 Premier League.
Ijiwole is held in high regard by the Terriers but the reigning Premier League champions are apparently keen to keep an eye on him over a sustained period before offering him a chance to stay in their youth setup.
Andrew Ijiwole, who joined Huddersfield Town in the summer of 2018, had spells with the youth teams of QPR and Southampton earlier in his career.
The 17-year-old was loaned out to BetVictor Northern Premier League Division One North West team Ossett United on in August but now he is looking to earn himself a chance to impress for the Premier League giants.
Given that he is yet to play senior professional football for any club in the Football League, not much is known about his playing style, strengths and weaknesses but he has been profiled as a jet-heeled winger capable of operating on either flank.
To put things into perspective, Man City are constantly on the lookout to supplement their youth and development sides with top-quality young talent and Andrew Ijiwole looks like a player with potential.
The reigning Premier League champions have put a lot of emphasis on youth development over the past few years, besides forking out millions to build a formidable first-team studded with several world-class stars.
Even if he manages to impress the youth staff and earn himself a deal at Man City, he would initially link up with the U-18s and then it will be up to him to progress through the ranks to the U-23s in the Premier League 2.
Ijiwole will be hoping to catch the eye of some Football League club in the coming years in order to further his development on loan before possibly staking a claim for a transition to City’s first-team.
The winger is still very much in his formative years as a footballer and he needs a lot more polishing regardless of where he chooses to hone his skills.
Man City snapped up emerging prospects Liam Delap and Morga Rogers from Derby County and West Brom respectively this summer, while Pedro Porro and Ryotaro Meshino also came through the door as a part of the club’s long-term plans moving forward.
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Andrew Ijiwole is still very much a rookie but if he manages to convince the coaching staff of his talent and potential during the trial period, there is no reason why the Citizens shouldn’t offer him a contract.