Scottish football isn’t exactly receiving the best press at the moment. You can’t discuss anything without mentioning the words ‘Rangers’ and ‘Newco’ and therefore not much attention has been cast towards other happenings in the SPL. For fans of Aberdeen though, bad news could be on the way. It seems that Wigan are about to complete a move for their highly rated youngster Fraser Fyvie after holding talks with the midfielder.
The 19-year-old is set for a move to the Premier League for an expected seven figure sum, offering him the chance to showcase his skills at the highest level. Dons fans will know all about Fyvie’s potential, having seen him make his debut back in 2009 as a mere 16-year-old against Hamilton Academical. That appearance made him the youngest ever player to pull on the famous red shirt and by January 2010, he also held the record for youngest goalscorer in the SPL as well, taking the landmark off David Goodwillie when he notched against Hearts.
Fyvie will hope his move to England goes better than that of Goodwillie’s, who failed to establish himself in the Blackburn line-up last season as the club got relegated. However, if Fyvie does sign for Wigan, he is making the right choice in terms of club. Both James McCarthy and James McArthur made the transition from talented youngster to seasoned professional at the DW Stadium and they have established themselves as first team regulars under Roberto Martinez’s stewardship.
Martinez’s style of football will suit Fyvie down to the ground as well; indeed he refuses to alter from the neat passing and possession-based game that won Swansea so many plaudits last season. Martinez in fact started that revolution at the Liberty Stadium and continued his philosophy at Wigan, a philosophy commendable considering the club seems eternally destined to battle against relegation.
Wigan has also proved a decent place for young protégées to forge a career in the Premier League, as their better players seem to move on almost every season to bigger clubs. This will please Fyvie, who will look to enhance his reputation, before potentially chancing his hand at a higher level by perhaps emulating fellow Scottish midfielders Charlie Adam and Darren Fletcher who ply their trade at the top end of the Premier League with Liverpool and Manchester Untied respectively.
The move could also lead to Fyvie challenging for full international honours, he has already won a place in the Scotland U19 squad and the next logical step would be up into the U21’s. However, with manager Craig Levein looking to bring together a group of players that could end the woe for Scotland at international level, Fyvie could be fast-tracked into the Tartan Army setup in the hope of him one day becoming a quality regular for the national team.
There’s no doubting that Fyvie is a raw talent as he’s made just 58 appearances for the Dons in his career so far. However, he’s certainly worth a punt especially considering how expensive English youngsters can be these days. Compare Fyvie to say Josh McEachran and how much the two players would cost respectively and it’s easy to see why Premier League clubs are now looking north of the border for fresh, young blood.
With the cream of the Rangers crop having moved down to England as well, there will be a strong Scottish contingent in the top flight next year, something that has been lacking in recent years, with the Scottish influence on English football tending to come from the managerial department instead. It will be a wrench for Aberdeen to lose such a quality young player, but all eyes will be firmly fixed on Wigan’s performances next year to see how Fyvie settles into the Premier League.