Youth Feature


Author: . Published: at 5:38pm


 Hi all, this is my first piece and I hope to continue to write different sorts of West Ham related content. This is who I feel deserves some minutes playing in the first team.

Marcus Browne

My mate (if your one of my real Twitter followers you would know) is currently on loan at Wigan Athletic having come on against Manchester United at Old Trafford last weekend, Marcus has been at West Ham since the age of 8. At only at the age of 19 he has a great opportunity to show his talent in the Championship. With the departure of Dimitri Payet to Marseille, I was expecting to see Browne in and around the first team more as he can operate behind the striker or wide left, much like Payet. Although he has been on the first team bench several times this year including Liverpool away, unfortunately he was not subbed on. With flair, creativity, pace and skill, Browne deserves a chance to shine next season after his loan spell with Wigan in which he will be looking to catch the eye of Bilic. Having recently signing a new 3-and-a-half-year contract extension, Bilic sees Browne as in his future plans. As a proven player for the U23’s, Browne can have an impact on the first team if he has a successful spell at Wigan and we may see him next season.

Toni Martinez

Is an absolute favourite on Twitter because of the striker situation and his goal scoring form, many believed that the Spaniard should be given a run in the first team over the likes of Calleri, and I agreed. Martinez is a hungry, young, goal scorer with an incredible record in Spain and for the U23’s with many thinking he could be West Ham’s version of Harry Kane. Bought from Valencia for around £1m, Martinez agreed a 3-year deal in July. Having scored 10 in 11 for the U23’s, Martinez had several clubs after his signature when West Ham wanted to loan him out. He went on loan to Oxford United where he came on and scored on his debut against Newcastle with a thumping header in the FA Cup. He has proven to have an eye for goal and if and I’m sure he will score goals for Oxford, he will be in and around the first team next season to take the pressure of Carroll and Antonio.

Domingos Quina

Joined from Chelsea in May 2016 and having represented both Portugal U17 and U18, Quina came with a huge reputation. A central midfielder who is quick and agile but also not afraid to tackle, Quina has set the PL2 alight and has recently been nominated PL2 Premier League player of the month for January following a fantastic month for him individually. The midfielder scored an absolute stunner vs Leicester City lobbing the keeper from the halfway line in a 2-0 win. Quina also played twice vs Astra in Europa League qualifying which was short lived. He has been named on the bench several times already this season but has failed to make a Premier League appearance. If injuries occur, Quina could be called upon but he has huge potential and could play anyone across the midfield so his versatility could be very useful for Slav, he will definitely get some minutes next season if not this campaign.

Reece Oxford

Compared to Rio Ferdinand and made a name for himself when he pocketed Mesut Ozil in his own back yard days before collecting his GCSE results, Reece Oxford is arguably the biggest young talent West Ham possess. Having recently signed a new 4 and a half year contract amid interest from Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal, Oxford kept faith in the Hammers. He had many Championship clubs after him on loan in January but decided to join Reading because of Reading manager Jaap Stam and his proven defence experience where Oxford felt he would learn the most out of his loan experience. He has captained England U17’s and has played at every level upto the U20’s where he has played 3 times at the age of 18. He is also captain of the U23 side and has already been named as one of the world’s youngest prospects. Fans have been calling for him in the first team because of West Ham’s defensive fragilities but I believe Slaven has done the right thing and not risk a youngster but instead opted with experience with a new defensive partnership of Reid and new boy Jose Fonte. Oxford will definitely be in the first team next season either as a central defender or as a defensive midfielder where he has played before.

Josh Cullen

Republic of Ireland U21 international, Josh Cullen has always been regarded as one of the best technically within the West Ham ranks. Currently at loan at Bradford until the rest of the season, Cullen has received immense recognition with the Bantams, with a total of 42 appearances in the league already for Bradford scoring 1 goal but his all-round play and passing abilities getting recognition. Many see him as a direct replacement for Club Captain Mark Noble with Cullen bringing more legs and energy into the centre of the park. Him with Kouyate and Obiang in midfield would bring non-stop energy and legs into the team and after his very successful loan spell with Bradford I would expect Slav to include him in match day squads and to feature in Cup games. Much like Scott Parker in the way he dictates play, Cullen could be a great option to bring on when seeing a game out with non-stop aggression and pressing the opponents.

These are the top 5 youngsters who I think will have the biggest impact on the first team but others including Martin Samuelsen, Jamal Hector-Ingram and Joe Powell


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  • Mark
    6th February 2017 at 6:22 pm

    How about Reece Burke