Jamie Redknapp has been hugely impressed with the impact made by Johnnie Jackson since the introduction of the young midfielder to the first team group.
The captain has been an admiring onlooker since 21-year-old Johnnie was recalled from Coventry and featured in the games against Portsmouth, Charlton, Crystal Palace, Birmingham, Liverpool and Manchester City.
Jamie explained that, for young players, it is all about the getting and taking of chances when they come along.
"It's never easy and you need a little bit of luck to get your first chance and that is what has happened with Jacko," he reasoned. "A couple of players got injured, he got called back from his loan spell at Coventry and he has taken his chance."
Jamie, hoping for a reserve return next week after his knee injury, feels that the possession of a sweet left peg certainly works in Johnnie's favour and he has used it to good effect in recent games.
"He has had two assists in his last couple of games, has got a lovely left foot and if you've got that in this day and age you are worth your weight in gold. There are not many around and he is a great crosser of the ball.
"The ball against Liverpool was great and it caught out Biscan and Hyypia right through the middle. Luckily enough, Postie popped it away nicely.
Another to have impressed Jamie in recent weeks has been Stephen Kelly, the Republic of Ireland under-21 international who made his debut against Charlton and has since featured on the bench for the first team.
"I think it is harder for defenders because they seem to come into the team later on. There is a bit more pressure playing at the back but I think Stephen is going to make a big impact at some stage.
"Johnnie and Stephen have come in and it brings the age of the squad down too. It looks brighter now and the age of the team seems to be coming down all the time."
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