West Hams famed Academy of Football could be set to deliver its most impressive crop of talent, which the club must take full advantage.
The new group of youth is certainly something to be excited about. The side of 2023 were able to win the FA Youth Cup for the first time since 1999, beating Arsenal in a comfortable 5-1 thrashing at the Emirates.
The 1999 team contained many players that turned out to be stars over the course of their careers – more notably, the likes of Joe Cole, but also names like Stephen Bywater and Richard Garcia who some fans may remember too.
The West Ham side that beat Arsenal 5-1 earlier this year holds some very exciting talent too, with players like Divin Mubama, Ollie Scarles, Gideon Kodua and Callum Marshall impressing heavily.
However, there are some concerns over the lack of chances the younger players have received in the first team under David Moyes as Divin Mubama may look to leave the club as a result of little chances to impress.
Mubama, whose contract runs out in the summer of 2024, has featured on the bench in the first team this season 7 times in the league, though is yet to play a single minute. The 19-year-old striker has played just 26 minutes overall this season and has turned down contract offers from the club.
On the other hand, Ollie Scarles is another player that has seemingly impressed David Moyes and fans alike, with the versatile midfielder impressing down the left-hand side at youth level. Making his professional debut aged just 16 when West Ham beat FCSB in 2022, it is rumoured that Scarles could be Moyes’ idea of a replacement to the aging Aaron Cresswell.
Although spending most of his time as a left midfielder, Scarles has reportedly impressed as a left back too and could act as Cresswell’s successor. Emerson’s performances at left back may prevent many starts for Scarles, but a slow integration and chances to learn could be big for the now-17-year-old.
By Joe Murray