The success of Tottenham Hotspur players at the World Cup this summer and a succession of injury issues has seen plenty of young talents get their chance with the first-team in pre-season. One such player has been Oliver Skipp.
The 17-year-old has been in the United States with the Spurs first-team and his performances have earned him some rave reviews.
It is clear that Mauricio Pochettino is a fan of the player, so can he follow in the footsteps of Harry Winks and become a first-team regular at Spurs?
The comparison with Winks is clear. Both are local lads with similar playing styles. Combative in the challenge but a proficient passer of the ball, Skipp has been playing above his age grade for some time now.
“[Skipp] has really taken the game in his hands and is trying to do his thing. He’s been very good… He is not scared to get the ball, he is not scared to go forward and he is not scared to tackle. He’s an all-round midfielder. And I think with a lot of training, as he gets older, he will be there [in the first-team].”
Winks was a similar talent and eventually caught the eye of Pochettino. The Argentine is now a huge fan of the player, although injury has curtailed his development slightly.
Other midfield talents have tried and failed to establish themselves at Spurs. Tom Carroll, Jake Livermore, Nabil Bentaleb and Ryan Mason all spring to mind.
Skipp appears to be ahead of where those players were in their development at the same age.
It is important to remember he is just 17. Next season might be too soon to have Skipp playing regular first-team football. But the cup competitions and the current injury troubles give him a real chance of making a senior debut. It should hopefully be the start of a brilliant Tottenham career.