Tom steals show at Carrow Road
AN Attleborough teenager stole the show as the Norwich City pre-season bandwagon finally came home on Saturday against a Manchester United side.The stars of the future were supposed to be the ones wearing the famous red colours of Man U - but it was City youngster Tom Adeyemi who caught the eye.
AN Attleborough teenager stole the show as the Norwich City pre-season bandwagon finally came home on Saturday against a Manchester United side.
The stars of the future were supposed to be the ones wearing the famous red colours of Man U - but it was City youngster Tom Adeyemi who caught the eye.
Adeyemi, 17, whose career at Carrow Road began in the Academy set-up as an eight-year-old, put in the sort of performance that youngsters dream of, scoring a goal against Sir Alex Ferguson's young guns and leaving City boss Bryan Gunn with a selection headache.
Gunn has brought in three new central midfielders to compensate for the loss of Sammy Clingan and the anticipated departure of Darel Russell.
Three into two doesn't go - and Adeyemi's pre-season performances are simply confusing the equation.
All 11 starting places are up for grabs - and Adeyemi has put himself right in the middle of the picture.
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'They are all in my thoughts now and Tom has pushed himself up there as well,' said Gunn. 'It was good sitting next to (coach) Ian Crook and just analysing the performance from Tom and he looked at me and said. 'He's given you a problem'. That's what managers want - we have built the squad up now and we want competition for places. Tom is in there competing for one of the two positions in midfield and on today's showing he has showed what a good player he is.
'He is an excellent prospect and that's the reason he played today.
'I was quite proud to stand up in front of all the Academy staff this morning when they were having their induction meeting - he started right at the grass roots in Football in the Community and he's made his way straight through into the first team, and what a story that is.
'He didn't look overawed playing against Manchester United. He took the game to them. I was encouraging him to shoot before the game.
'He decided against one in the fifth minute, but the goal that he scored was top drawer.
'Then he had another opportunity where he had a hitch-kick volley late on. It was a good opportunity for Tom to show his promise - he's been doing that all through pre-season.
'I always said we would be looking forward to introducing some of the Academy scholars from last year into the first-team squad and Tom has certainly introduced himself in a fine fashion.'