Everton are definitely a club who have a reputation for placing their trust in young players, either from their own academy or players who are impressing elsewhere.
They have proven the first part of that statement to the footballing world by entrusting young talent such as Wayne Rooney, Jack Rodwell, Ross Barkley, Jonjoe Kenny and Tom Davies to step out from the youth ranks and blossom in senior football – additionally, the second part is proven by the pricey capture of then 21-year-old Richarlison.
There looks set to be another star emerging from the ranks in Anthony Gordon.
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The 18-year-old was signed to a new deal back in March amid interest from Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, and you can see why the German giants were keen.
Gordon has hit 17 goals for the Everton youth ranks in total, including a magnificent 14-goal campaign in just 15 appearances back in 2017/18 – made even more impressive by the fact that he is an attacking midfielder.
The teenager is the sixth-youngest man to play for the Toffees’ first-team, coming on as a substitute against Apollon Limassol aged just 16 years and 286 days.
What the exciting youngster must not do, however, is follow in the footsteps of another once exciting attacking midfielder from Everton’s academy – Kieran Dowell.
Dowell looked like bursting onto the scene as the next big thing to come out of Everton after making his Premier League debut against Bournemouth in 2016, before starting the last game of that 2015/16 season against Norwich.
The now 21-year-old has fizzled out massively, failing to kick on at Goodison Park despite a promising start – he was rated as the second-worst player in one of his last games for Everton against Rotherham in the Carabao Cup last season.
Dowell has spent time out on loan with Nottingham Forest and Sheffield Wednesday, but the Toffees don’t seem keen on keeping him around the place as they shipped him straight back out on loan again, this time to Derby.
Gordon definitely has a lot of promise, but he must grab the opportunity that Dowell seems to have missed with both hands.