This is the third instalment in out ‘meet the prospects’ series and it is proving to very much be a fluid process with some of our original prospects (Van De Beek and Cerny) have already moved on for a significant profit.
From our original list of five players I will now be running through some of our better prospects with a brief outline on my plan to develop them further. Once you’ve finished reading these posts please drop me a tweet or a comment below and let me know whether you’re enjoying these prospect reports and whether you would like to see them continue.
This will be the last time that Nouri appears on one of these lists. Not because I am planning to sell him or because he isn’t developing but purely because he has now established himself as a key component of our first team.
Since first appearing on the prospects list Nouri has improved on nearly every attribute and certainly every attribute that is necessary for his role. He has become a full Dutch international and he has attracted interest from some of Europe’s top sides. My hope is that I can actually keep hold of Nouri and make him the club captain at some point.
Che has been something of an enigma up until the start of this season. He has all the potential in the world and a physical profile (18 acc, 16 agi and 16 pace) that makes it very difficult for the opposition to stop him when he’s running in space.
The rest of his attributes however have not been developing along the same lines. The core attributes for his position are there but these make him very one dimensional.
It’s this season however that has seen his performances start to match his potential and he has been a match winner on several occasions. I have started PPM training now including ‘knocks ball past opponents’ and hopefully this will add to his profile as a winger.
The next step is to see his technical profile start to improve although he is under real pressure from the Ivorian winger Ahmed Soro.
The Italian midfielder is one of our greatest success stories to this point. He has now gained a fairly determined personality after starting out as balanced and his attributes are rising across the board. Since the sale of Donny Van De Beek he has become an integral part of the first team squad.
He’s still only 18 and has at least another three key development years left. Ideally I would see him becoming the replacement for Nouri when I inevitably have to sell him. Unfortunately at the time of writing there are eight sides interested in Antonucci all of whom are considerably bigger in stature than we are.
In terms of his development he will continue as he is at the moment given the favourable attribute changes.
Lopez is a strange case study. He’s had significant exposure to first team football now and his performances have been encouraging. He’s just not developing at the rate that I would expect.
I’m also less than enamoured that he seems to be holding on to his ‘sporting’ personality. For those that don’t know a sporting personality for a non newgen player dictates that his determination will be between 1-9. At least Lopez is at 9 which is the top of the spectrum.
I need to see a significant increase in key attributes by the time he hits his 21st birthday for him to remain a part of my plans.
He also suffers from the fact that to this point I have had two strikers come through the youth intakes that have huge potential.
I generally have a complete blind spot when it comes to finding and developing newgen goalkeepers. Konings appears to be the exception. He was generated in the first youth intake of the save and immediately stood out.
I have a slight bias towards taller goalkeepers (even though I know that physical height has no bearing) but his performances and development have superseded that bias. For some reason he appears to be completely incapable of passing a ball (1!!) but everything else is going up nicely.
At the time of writing Konings has also been capped a couple of times at senior level. Unfortunately the likes of Juventus, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Arsenal are continually linked with him.
The Ivorian winger is the jewel in my crown. His output with Jong Ajax (B team) and the U-19 side has been simply sensational as he fulfils the role of Che Nunnely in each side.
I can however foresee a time when there is an overlap between Nunnely and Soro needing gametime in the same position for the first team. My plan in the first instance is to start training Soro to be comfortable playing on the left side. I have an absence of real talent throughout the squad on the left of midfield and we could have Nunnely and Soro in the same team.
My plan is for Soro to be slowly introduced to the first team squad towards the end of this season before he becomes a regular first team player next season.
Schilder is the best defensive newgen at the club. He’s still only eighteen so there is room to develop further. He already has a template of defensive attributes that suggest he may become a world class defender when he is fully developed.
Schilder has become a member of the first team squad already having come through the same youth intake as Konings. He’s generally played as the left sided defender in my back three and this role does require him to use the ball intelligently when we recycle the ball.
He’ll shortly move on to a training schedule as a ball playing defender to get his more technical skill up to a level where I am comfortable. I’m also considering tweaking his PPM’s to get forward if his passing becomes acceptable.
Matthijs De Ligt
De LIgt actually starts at the club and has been slowly developing in the background. His performances in real life this pre season actually prompted me to take a longer look at him. De Ligt actually has an interesting template given his mental attributes and the fact that his passing is already set at 15.
He is currently learning how to ‘get forward whenever possible’ as I look to tweak my tactical system. He is also next in line on my mental depth chart to slot in to the first team should I lose another defensive player.
Wijnhoven is the first of the two strikers that I consider to have serious potential that I’m including in these lists. His talent is there for all to see and I am currently implementing training to teach him a series of PPM’s that I think will compliment the advanced forward role. The first of these will be places shots simply because it’s my favourite PPM for striker.
As with Ahmed Soro he will be slowly introduced in to the first team towards the end of the season before getting more exposure next year.
I am hopeful that he develops in to at least an international class striker.
I’ll update on the progress of these players again shortly but for now the next update will be the 2016/17 end of season review