Tottenham Hotspur Under-18s coach Stuart Lewis has hailed Jamie Donley’s quality and asserted that the youngster is ready to make the step up to the senior side if called upon.
The versatile attacker, who can operate as a number eight, a ten or as a conventional striker, has already amassed six goals and 11 assists in 11 matches across all competitions so far and is showing no signs of slowing down.
It was reported by TEAMtalk last week that Ange Postecoglou has been impressed by the 18-year-old and is expected to have discussions with the Tottenham hierarchy over the coming weeks on whether to loan the player out in January.
The report stated that League One clubs such as Charlton and Leyton Orient are ready to pounce if Spurs make Donley available on loan.
Meanwhile, Dean Jones revealed in his column on GiveMeSport over a month ago that the feeling inside Tottenham is that the youngster is ready to make the step up to the senior squad.
The journalist added that there is a growing belief at Hotspur Way that this could be Donely’s breakthrough season, particularly given the injuries that Postecoglou is dealing with at the moment.
Tottenham coaches are impressed with Jamie Donley
When asked about the teenager’s readiness to make the step up, Lewis has now told Spurs Play: “I think Jamie’s stats, goals and assists speak for themselves.
“But I also think his work rate and the manager [Postecoglou] has also spoken about the importance of how aggressive we are on the press and consistently doing that.
“I think Jamie’s performances this season have been really impressive. We know the quality he has. Obviously, that left foot has scored some goals over the years for myself and the academy teams. You watch through some of these goals, they’re really high-level.
“It’s important Jamie now brings that to training with the first-team and consistently doing that with the Under-21s. Hopefully, in time his opportunity comes and he’s ready.
“I’ve seen Jamie do some outstanding moments within games at Under-13, 15 and 16 levels. They are of a high quality technically. Now it’s about getting to the next step in his development and showing the manager and the coaching staff how good he can be and bringing that to training.
“But that left foot is pretty sweet and he’s scored a few goals for myself, one from the halfway line last year. That was amazing.”
When asked if Doney can operate in the James Maddison role in the future, Lewis responded: “He’s a creative player, he can see things on the pitch that are really exciting and he’ll try things.
“He plays with bravery and he looks to hurt the opposition. Anywhere across that front area of the pitch. Playing off the right as well, as a No9 or No10.”
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I do not think Postecoglou would consider throwing Donley straight into the deep end. The likely scenario is that the 18-year-old would be loaned out to an EFL club in January and potentially be considered a realistic first-team option next season.
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