Analysis - The EDS and potential loans
By Steven McInerney, Wed 08 July 2015 13:44
A look at possible loan deals for EDS players from the "In Esteemed Kompany" blog
The loan market. A necessary evil; one that shares a tempestuous relationship with many an academy director, and for good reason. Loans are a gamble. For all the promise of turning a player into a potential star they're also unreliable, potentially damaging and often underwhelming. Your brightest prospect can find themselves sat on a bench for weeks, dropped for 'experience' when their new manager panics after a couple of bad results, immediately sapping the life and self-belief out of a young player as their club watches on helplessly. Patrick Vieira hinted at a similar opinion recently when he spoke out quite vocally about his belief for the need of B-teams in the British game. The potential benefits of a parent club being able to nurture future first teamers up close, letting them have the space that they need to grow as adults while playing competitive football are undeniable. It still seems a pipe dream though - opposition is vocal and understandable and it's unlikely to subside any time soon. The loan market is here to stay, basically, and the only choice the clubs have is to simply be good at it.
Bearing that in mind, the 2014/2015 season was a relatively successful one for City. Not all of the moves were perfect but many of the young prospects came back better players, wiser having lived in considerably more demanding environments than the relatively pressure-free Barclays u21 league. Denayer was the notable success - he hadn't had even the briefest of tastes of first team football before he moved to Celtic this time last year. His development was startling. Barely twelve months later and he's a full Belgian international, the Scottish Young Player of the Year and being lauded as potentially world class. He's almost certainly set to be involved with City's first team next year. In a nutshell, his loan to Celtic was a masterstroke. Lopes excelled too, asserting himself at Lille as one of the most exciting young forwards in world football. Rekik's second spell at PSV earned him a permanent transfer to Marseille, whereas Rusnak shone for Cambuur before moving to Groningen officially in January, earning City tidy sums in the process.
It was in the typically tough English leagues where some of the moves felt a little frustrating. Fofana, Evans, Hiwula and Cole all had wildly different spells, highlighting the unpredictability of temporary moves. There were some moderate successes - Fofana found plenty of game time, even if he didn't quite express himself fully, and Leigh has probably guaranteed his future in the professional game with his performances at Crewe. Hiwula likewise impressed at Walsall following an initially disappointing move to Yeovil. Others didn't quite go to plan. Notably Devante Cole's moves - he shone at Barnsley before a later stint at MK Dons found himself becoming far too familiar with the bench, dampening any sense of progress he had initially made with Barnsley. Guidetti's move to Celtic flat-lined too after an explosive start, and the less said about Zuculini's disastrous time in Spain at Valencia and Cordoba the better. Hindsight's a wonderful thing...
And so to this season. With the players reporting back for training today I thought I'd take a look at the others who would benefit from first team football, and in particular players who I think could use a good loan as an opportunity to make a viable bid for a first team squad place for the start of the 2016/2017 season.
Read the full article on the In Esteemed Kompany blog.