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After dream 2017, what next for Everton talent Jonjoe Kenny?

English Premier League

After dream 2017, what next for Everton talent Jonjoe Kenny?

The 21-year-old defender has not been in an Everton matchday squad since February.

There is no doubt that 2017 was a fantastic year for Everton defender Jonjoe Kenny. The young right-back had an excellent season with the Everton under-23’s in 2016-17. It culminated in the Toffees winning the Premier League 2 title.

That summer he travelled with the England under-20 side to South Korea for the World Cup. The Everton youngster was the standout full-back of the competition as England won a historic title on the world stage.

Then came his Everton breakthrough. With Seamus Coleman injured the 21-year-old became a regular in the side from September and, despite some teething problems, was one of Everton’s better players throughout their woeful run of form in the Autumn.

With his tireless energy, good reading of the game and excellent crossing he was earning his place in the Everton starting XI.

England’s defender Jonjoe Kenny (L) receives a yellow card during the U-20 World Cup semi-final football match between England and Italy in Jeonju on June 8, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / JUNG Yeon-Je (Photo credit should read JUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images)

But what next for Kenny?

Since the turn of the year however, the Everton talent has not been featuring as regularly. Coleman is back fit and Kenny has not played for the Everton first-team since the 24th February defeat to Watford.

In fact, he has not even appeared in a matchday squad since.

 

Sam Allardyce is not well known for his development of young talent and it will come as no surprise that the Everton manager is not ready to rely on Kenny as back-up.

Of course, playing in the Everton first-team will always be hard with someone as good as Coleman ahead of you. But Kenny would have at least hoped for a place on the bench. Instead, it is Cuco Martina getting that privilege.

LONDON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 13: Jonjoe Kenny of Everton tackles Dele Alli of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Everton at Wembley Stadium on January 13, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Kenny is 21 now and will no doubt be wanting to play regular first-team football, or at least be in the Everton squad on matchdays.

Somehow, it does not feel like Allardyce will be the one to give Kenny such opportunities at Goodison Park.

If Big Sam remains, it is hard to see Kenny getting much of a look-in next season at Everton.

Kenny has been out on loan before but on both occasions with League One sides, Wigan Athletic and Oxford United. Next season perhaps would be the perfect opportunity for him to spend an entire campaign out on loan in the Championship or at another Premier League side. As long as he is somewhere where he will play regular football, Everton would be wise to make such a move happen.

Fans at Goodison are keen on Kenny and so they should be. He has all the talents and attributes to be a long-term Everton star. That should not be forgotten just because Coleman is back fighting fit.

Sports journalist based in Bristol. Everton fan for my sins.

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