England Under-21 manager Aidy Boothroyd has spoken in glowing terms of former Tottenham academy starlet Noni Madueke, who received his first call up for the Young Lions.
Madueke was rated very highly while coming through the ranks at Spurs having impressed for the club’s Under-16s and Under-18s.
However, the winger rejected Tottenham’s contract offer and decided to join PSV Eindhoven in 2018 to get a clearer pathway into the first-team.
His decision has been vindicated as the 19-year-old has broken into PSV’s first-team this season and established himself as a key player in the side.
The former Spurs man has notched up 9 goals and 8 assists so far this campaign and has been rewarded for his form with a call-up to Boothroyd’s side.
Madueke was an unused substitute yesterday and had to watch on as his team-mates suffered a 1-0 defeat to Switzerland to begin their Euro campaign in the worst possible way.
The Young Lions boss admitted that he has been impressed by what he has seen from Madueke so far and even compared his development to Phil Foden.
Boothroyd told The Daily Mail: “He’s certainly a very talented young man, really excited to be called up by the Under 21s, and a little bit like Phil [Foden] last time, nobody had really heard of him until he came and played in the tournament.
“They knew a little bit about him but that set him off on a trajectory and we’re hoping Noni can create even more positive attention for the way that they play. He’s got a lovely infectious character that comes out even over the phone.”
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Madueke certainly has the potential to evolve into a top player and Spurs could well be left to rue their failure to hold on to him. However, this is not a phenomenon that is unique to Spurs.
All Premier League clubs are now finding it difficult to hold on to their best young players as these youngsters now realise that they are far more likely to break into the first-team earlier at a Dutch or a German club.
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