Everton have had something of a knack for developing young attacking talents throughout the years, from Anthony Gordon to Francis Jeffers, with Wayne Rooney undoubtedly being the biggest success story.
With Frank Lampard’s side stuttering along in the league this season, what the 44-year-old would do to have another talent like Rooney available?
He might just be in luck, with a 19-year-old Thomas Cannon currently waiting to be unleashed in the first team…
The centre forward has started off this season with a bang for the U21s, scoring five goals and grabbing three assists in the Premier League 2, as well as bagging three in the Papa John’s Trophy.
The future certainly looks bright for Cannon and he appears to have similar attributes to Rooney, a keen eye for goal but someone who is also able to create plenty of opportunities for teammates during a match.
His swift progress hasn’t gone unnoticed, with David Unsworth, the U21s’ manager, heaping praise on the 19-year-old, saying: “We all know about Tom’s goalscoring, he does the hardest thing in the game, he puts the ball in the back of the net.
“We just need to get the other areas of his game up to speed and he’s done so well this year. He’s developed at a really fast rate and we’re all delighted for him.”
A first-team opportunity might not be too far away, especially if he continues with his current progress and goalscoring rate.
With academy graduate Gordon thriving in the first team and attracting interest from Chelsea due to his talent, there is no reason why Cannon cannot follow in his footsteps.
Rooney was an anomaly, a once-in-a-generation talent. With the 37-year-old now a manager, there’s space for a new prodigy, will Cannon be Rooney 2.0? Only time will tell.