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Under-19 Files - part 3

Posted on 23 May 2002  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Pat Holland moves upfield in his 'end of term' assessments on players that featured in his under-19 Academy side last season, continuing with the midfielders.

Well, Walter's one of those lads that just hasn't played this year basically. If he's played half a dozen games that'll be about it.

He's had an ankle injury that has been ongoing all season. We've recently had it scanned and I think there is a bit of tissue damage there.

So it's been an unfortunate year for him because he's missed a lot of football, which he needs, physically and mentally, to have played in. He's going to go straight into the environment of reserve team training next year and he's got to prove himself.

When fit he's good on the ball with a lovely left foot. A great engine and can run up and down all day long. His decision making is good, but the physical side I think he finds quite hard at times.

Again, he needs to play and he needs to develop his body and he's only going to do that by training and playing. So it's a big year for Walter coming up.

Nicky forced his way into the left hand side and had a really bright start. The cup games towards the end found him lacking a bit of experience and composure, which opened the door for David Galbraith to come back in again - and that's football.

David had the disappointment of missing some major games and then got back in for the last few under-19 games in the league with Nicky on the bench.

Again, there is potential there, he's got to think about his game a little bit more. There are a lot of good points to his game, he's got a great engine and will put his foot in.

He's got some great qualities, a left footer, it's just his decision making at times that lets him down.

David's one of those that a lot was expected of last year, after the under-17 season the year before.

He's quite a bright lad on and off the park, he always wants a joke and a little bit of a laugh with the coach. He's got a nice personality and needs to think about his game.

I've done a lot of work with David this season, to try and give him an idea of playing in wide areas through my experience of playing right and left. I think he's thought about it and he's trying to do things.

As the season's gone on a couple of his performances have been not bad. He's recently played for the reserves and his performances have been okay. He's got to be more consistent and, again, it will be that maturity that will help.

It will be a big year for David, he wasn't given a pro and was given a third year, so he more than anyone has got more to prove. Hopefully by Christmas he will have done enough to secure that pro contract.

I've enjoyed working with him and wish him well.

Mark, for me, has turned it a little bit. Really, him and young Ben Bowditch are very similar in the way they play and have both contended for that central midfield position.

He lost it to Ben at one stage then Ben got an injury and Mark came in and has kept that position for himself, which is full credit to him.

He's a good student and is an intelligent boy. He wants to learn and will talk about his game, I think he's done okay and I'm pleased for him.

Dean potentially has got a lot of gifts. He's an excellent runner with the ball, a terrific right foot and is a wonderful technician, especially with dead balls, free-kick and corners.

I think with Dean we've got to wait and see how he develops physically and mentally. He's one of those lads that is just a little bit frail at the moment and sometimes can get muscled out of games.

He needs to overcome that hurdle, but is a good lad to work with and wants to learn and listen. Overall I think he's had a good season, Dean.

Ben's one of those that we took out of the back four. Originally, for England, he was a centre-half and captain, but we just looked at the height factor.

It's sad really when you've got to look at players and take them out of position. But there's so many tall lads in the Premier League and that's how we gage our boys.

They are going to have to play against tall and muscular centre forwards at times and they've got to be able to deal with it.

So we took him out and put him in front of the back four and I think it's a transitional period at the moment. All his career he's played at the back and it's definitely a different ball game once you move outside of that area.

It's a difficult position, for me, because as a player myself they tried to get me to play it and I found it difficult because I was one to run with the ball and was all over the shop.

I'm not saying Ben's like that but, as I say, it's a transitional period and he needs to learn the position. Again, it will be an interesting year for him moving up with the senior lads.