Burnley aren’t necessarily known for their technical attacking play, but they may just have unearthed a future offensive star in Dwight McNeil.
The 20-year-old was in fine form on Saturday, as he scored and assisted for the very first time in his Premier League career. His contribution against Bournemouth helped the Clarets to a 3-0 win, which has seen them move up to 10th place in the table.
He has now racked up 10 assists in the top flight, becoming the 11th youngest player to do so since 1992.
The Lancashire club are already aware that they have a top talent at their disposal – and they know that they are unlikely to be able to keep hold of him in the long-term. Sean Dyche has even admitted that he will outgrow the team, and that a bigger side will come in for him further down the line.
Back in December, Tottenham were credited with interest in the 20-year-old rising star. Of course, he didn’t make any move during the January transfer window, instead staying at Turf Moor.
But that doesn’t mean that he won’t be on his way out of the club in the near future – that could even be in the summer.
Whether Spurs make a move for the youngster remains to be seen, but his latest display is another example of his ability, and it may just give Daniel Levy food for thought ahead of the transfer window.
His showing against the Cherries was almost flawless – not only did he score and assist, he also managed three key passes whilst also landing 88% of his attempted passes. The 8.9 SofaScore rating he registered was bettered by no other player on the pitch from either side – he was the clash’s star performer.
Tottenham have history, and a reputation, for their ability to develop young Englishmen.
Harry Kane is the one who stands out – the striker is now England captain and has 181 goals in 273 appearances for the Lilywhites – and there are plenty of others who have followed him.
Dele Alli, Eric Dier, Harry Winks and Danny Rose have all appeared for the Three Lions after breaking into Spurs’ senior side, whilst Kieran Trippier and Kyle Walker also made their debuts for their country during their time in north London before moving on to pastures new.
In fact, no other side has produced more players for England than Tottenham, who have provided 78 players for the national side since 1903.
As a 15-year-old, McNeil was released by Manchester United, which left his hopes of making it at the highest level in tatters.
However, he has progressed in to a top-level player, and is flourishing in the North West.
His ability to play both on the left and right wings makes him a versatile player, one which Jose Mourinho could well put to good use.
As he establishes his plans for the summer transfer window, Levy would do well to consider making a concrete move for the Burnley star.