The future doesn’t look particularly bright for young English players trying to break into the Premier League but there is still some promising young talent emerging in the lower echelons of the football league. Check out 18 year old, Northampton Town striker, Ivan Toney.
Ivan Toney was a prolific goalscorer in the Northampton Town youth academy leading to him being the youngest ever first team player in the clubs history after making his debut for the Cobblers at just sixteen years of age in an FA Cup match against Bradford City at Valley Parade in 2012.
He netted three very important goals at the end of last season that helped to preserve Northampton’s status in the Football league. Toney has netted five league goals this season and two more in cup competitions meaning his tally currently stands at seven goals in 25 appearances. It’s not a prolific return, but at 18 years of age he is showing that he can net goals in league 2 which is a promising sign. One of his goals certainly caught the attention of onlookers this season; a brilliant overhead kick scored against Dagenham and Redbridge FC.
In November a half a million pound transfer deal to Wolverhampton Wanderers collapsed after the young forward allegedly failed his medical at Molineux. The exact nature of the problem remains undisclosed but the failed transfer meant Northampton didn’t cash in on a club record sale. Whether or not it was on medical grounds hasn’t been clarified, so it may have been that Wolves changed just their mind at the last minute. However it may turn out to be a blessing in disguise. Many youngsters at higher league clubs such as Wolves, would love the opportunity to get out on loan at a football league club and earn their stripes at first team level instead of getting caught up in a congestion of talented potential at under 21/ reserve team level. If he keeps on scoring goals on a regular basis in League Two he will eventually earn his chance to progress to a higher level anyway.
Northampton will be relieved that they have tied his contract up and that any big club will have to show them the money in order to sign him.
Name: Ivan Toney
Position: Centre Forward
Club: Northampton Town FC
Sqaud No: 24