clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The Tilehurst End Crystal Ball 2015 - Part 2

New, comments

We continue our look at where we think some of Reading's brightest prospects will end up in five years time with a look at the key midfielders and forwards.

Tony Marshall/Getty Images

As with part one of our crystal ball, we'll be taking our best guess at where these Reading Academy products will be playing their football in five years time. Also worth noting these were predictions carried out before any pre-season action had taken place.

Midfielder: Tariqe Fosu

Marc Mayo (MM): An excellent prospect, I say on the evidence of 70 minutes of football. Inconsistency will be his big problem and while raw he reminds me of Michail Antonio, so he could grace the Premier League but those rough edges could take a while to sandpaper down.

Prediction: Championship

WilliamOwain (WO):Very skilful player and such a good penalty taker I was surprised Garath McCleary took the penalty at Derby. Impressed in the three games I saw him play in 2012 though like many of the players did tire badly. It will be interesting to see how he does next season.

Prediction: Lower Premier League/Higher Championship (like Obita might need to be part of a promotion winning team to make the Premier League)

Wimb (W): Fosu's debut at Derby was one of the most exciting we've seen from an Academy product in quite a while and the fact there was interest from Premier League clubs this summer shows how highly regarded the young winger is. Has all the tools to make it, just a case of continuing to put in the hard work.

Prediction: Lower Premier League

*****

Midfielder: Aaron Kuhl

Royal Hoops (RH): He's exactly the sort of midfielder every top side is after nowadays. Deep-lying, okay defensively and with a superb pass on him, he can go far. The fact Manchester City were after him a year or so ago says a lot about the talent this Sideshow Bob lookalike has.

Prediction: Mid Premier League.

WO:A real leader at youth level. He looks so calm and composed on the ball. One of the biggest disappointments last season was his disappearance from the first team after September. The one question mark against him is his ability to play in a team which doesn't dominate possession like the talented youth team he captained.

Prediction: Lower Premier League/Higher Championship

MM:The captain of the team at youth level is always your best player, so you know the club rate Kuhl. If he reaches PL level he'll be excellent as his style suits many teams, but whether he can deal with the more hoof ball stuff down in the Championship could be his failing.

Prediction: Championship

*****

Midfielder: Aaron Tshibola

WO: I've seen him twice and both times I've formed the same opinion: he's got the touches but struggles to have a real positive influence on the game. However, it would be harsh to judge him on two games and he did have a very successful loan spell at Hartlepool though the step up from League Two to Championship is a big one.

Prediction: Lower Championship / Higher League One

W: I remember seeing him in the FA Youth Cup a couple of seasons ago and really being impressed with his presence. The way he got stuck into a relegation battle and helped Hartlepool survive is also a very encouraging sign.

Prediction: Championship

RH: Earned rave reviews at Hartlepool last season and could (should?) be a regular feature for Reading in this coming season.

Prediction: Upper Championship.

*****

Midfielder: Jack Stacey

MM: I'm not quite sure what type of winger Stacey is. Out and out pace he has not, blessed be he with magnificent technique I also doubt. If he can't solve this then it'll be Leagues One and Two for Jack Stacey.

Prediction: League One

RH: Steve Clarke is obviously a fan, but I'm not entirely sure what standout trait it is that Stacey has. That may be a good thing. It may not.

Prediction: Mid-lower Championship.

WO: It's easy to overlook Stacey for the more skilful Fosu, but if he's anything like he was at youth level then he will impress you the more you watch him. He reminds me of Glenn Little except he has pace and can score from distance.

Prediction: Lower Premier League/Higher Championship

*****

Forward: Craig Tanner

WO: My worry with Tanner is that he may turn out to be another Simon Church: very promising at youth level but struggles at senior level. No goals during his loan spell at AFC Wimbledon looks very similar to the loan spells Church had before 2009. I would like to see him given time to develop especially as he suffered a bad injury just as he had broken into the first team. His chested pass in the U21 final against Man City is proof alone that he is a talent worth persevering with.

Prediction:  Lower Championship / Higher League One

W: After a bright start to last season, injury robbed him of a decent run under Nigel Adkins. Showed hints of promise at AFC Wimbledon but his failure to find the net is disappointing. The fact he was given a new long-term deal in January shows the club still have high hopes for him.

Prediction: League One

RH: This guy has been banging in goals since he was in the womb.

Prediction: Mid Championship.

*****

Forward: Dominic Samuel

MM: If he stays fit then being a League One/ Championship level striker should be within Samuel's reach, if he keeps his head screwed on.

Prediction: League One

W: There is that nagging question as to why with goals so hard to come by Nigel Adkins still refused to play a striker banging them in for fun in the U21 leagues. That being said, Samuel showed at Coventry how he can score goals at a good level. He needs to avoid the pitfalls players like Leroy Lita fell into if he wants to be a Premier League player.

Prediction: Championship

RH: Oh, how I yearn for Samuel to be given an opportunity at Reading. He made a huge impression last season, and I can see him doing very well for us in the years to come-providing he signs a new deal.

Prediction: Upper Championship

******

So that's our money where our mouth is but how do you see things? Vote in the poll below and please leave us your thoughts in the comments section below. Likewise if you want to discuss and make a prediction for a player we've not covered, put your rep on the line ;) We'll bring you a recap the poll results next week, in the mean time you can follow the results here.