Opinion: What is the plan for Dane Scarlett at Tottenham?

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Dane Scarlett
ANP Sport via Getty Images

With Spurs only having one senior striker this season in the form of Harry Kane, Dane Scarlett has been given multiple opportunities in the UEFA Conference League.

Unfortunately, the 17-year-old has struggled in the third-tier European competition. 

Featuring in three European matches so far (transfermarkt), as well as a qualifier for the Conference League, Dane has come up short with the physicality of the game.

Facing up against strong European defenders when Dane is still developing himself was never a match made in heaven. This has been shown, with Nuno usually subbing the youngster off in the second half and Conte yet to give him a runout. 

Ideally, I would still like to play Scarlett in the UEFA Conference League. However, he needs to be played alongside someone else.

Playing a 17-year-old up front by himself, and then sending long balls to him is never going to work. All this leads to is Dane having his confidence knocked, something that can be disastrous at such a young age. 

It would have been possible to play him alongside someone else if Levy delved into the market for a secondary striker. But that isn’t realistic when the chairman continues to underfund the squad and focus on the stadium.  

To make matters even trickier for the teenager, he has largely been played in much-changed starting line-ups with a series of out-of-form fringe players.

It is hardly an environment for a youngster to thrive when Spurs are constantly on the backfoot during his appearances, unable to actually create him any chances.

So, if we can’t play him up front by himself, or with a backup striker, then what is the option? 

For me, Dane should be given a loan move to an EFL team, preferably in League One. We’ve seen Troy Parrott perform strongly for MK Dons this season, making me think Dane could do the same.

So far, Parrott has 4 goals and 4 assists within 14 EFL games (transfermarkt). Although this isn’t setting the world alight, it’s far better than being isolated for Spurs in meaningless Conference League games. 

After all, not only is Scarlett not getting a fair chance in the first-team, but his involvement with the senior squad means he is barely playing any youth football either. His talent is simply being left to stagnate.

A loan to League One would allow Dane to adapt to the physicality of the game against a lower quality of teams. It’s clear he can perform against League One opposition, shown by his goal for the under 21’s side against Oxford in the Papa John’s trophy.  

Many people are writing Dane Scarlett off at such a young age. To even have this as a suggestion is ridiculous. No fan can expect a 17-year-old to perform at such a high level of football, so early on in their career.

Nowadays, football fans expect results immediately, but this isn’t the case most of the time. The famous saying, ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ must be used when referring to Scarlett.

I have no doubt that he has the potential to become a consistent Premier League striker, but it will take time. 

Overall, I think a loan move for Scarlett in January makes the most sense given the current situation. At the moment, he’s wasting his time at Tottenham.

One option could be that Levy splashes cash on a backup striker in January, giving Scarlett the opportunity to take a loan move to the third tier. I really hope Scarlett can get his first professional goal soon though, with the sky being his limit! 

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