Football

Jordan Ibe making a case for first-team place

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Jordon Ibe caught the eye of Premier League giants Liverpool several years ago after only 11 senior appearances at Wycombe Wanderers.

Having made his debut at the young age of 15 as a substitute against Colchester United he soon became the youngest ever Wycombe player to score in the Football League with a fine solo effort against Sheffield Wednesday in a 2-1 defeat. 

The Chairboys' youth-team product reportedly began to attract interest from Manchester United until in late 2011, but Liverpool snapped up the young prospect for a reported fee of £500,000 plus future additional installments.

"It's a fantastic move for him." Waddock told the club website back in 2011, who tipped him to succeed the highest level.

"He's a phenomenal talent which is why we gave him a chance to show what he can do at first-team level.

"I have no doubt in my mind that he will go on to become a big star and I will be keeping a close eye on his progress."

Ibe began to earn rave reviews at youth level for Liverpool under-21s and his performances led many fans to tip him as the next off of Liverpool's Academy production line. In reward for his form, he was awarded Academy Player of the Year 2012-13 in an official online poll.

The English winger was consequently handed his senior debut against QPR in May in which he assisted Phillipe Coutinho's finish during a 63-minute cameo. He continued to impress with a stand-out display against Preston North End in Liverpool's opening friendly of the 2013-14 season.

And Ibe repaid Rodgers' faith in him with his first Liverpool goal, a superb low strike from the edge of the penalty box in the first half. 

The Bermondsey-born starlet has shown both blistering pace and strength in recent performances for the Merseyside club and although he is still young, he has the ideal combination of energy and raw talent. 

Ibe also has versatility, which will stand him in good stead under his Northern Irish boss who has preferred players with flair, work ethic and the adaptability to play in several positions.

Ibe can play anywhere across a front three but features predominantly on the wing, where he can use his attributes to devastating effect. 

It is no gross exaggeration to say that the teenager possesses raw talent beyond his years, cast away any pre-existing stereotypes you may have about teenagers because Ibe conforms to none.

His physique is superior to a vast majority of his peers and he is therefore able to impose himself on a game against any team.

Unlike Raheem Sterling, Ibe's dominant physicality which means it is increasingly difficult for opposition defences to deal with him. On a cold wednesday night in Stoke, Ibe will not shy away from a battle in contrast to some European imports from recent years.

His first goal in a red shirt has been followed by delightful displays against an Indonesian XI and Melbourne Victory in Liverpool's pre-season tour.  

Due to his scintillating form, it is believed that Ibe could push for a place in Rodgers' plans next year. The emergence of the 17-year-old and his 18-year-old teammate Sterling has whet Liverpool supporters' appetites after a lack of pace and direct attacking over recent years.

In the wake of recent plaudits, Ibe has shown fantastic character by remaining level-headed. "I feel I'm doing okay. I'm trying to learn from the senior players and the new lads that have come in," he told the Liverpool Echo.

"Hopefully I can be consistent and play well, so hopefully I can get a chance again in the first team. When I play, hopefully I can get a goal and help the squad do well this season.

'I'm learning a lot, especially with defending. The gaffer is helping me a lot with when I haven't got the ball, coming to tuck in and watching the full-back and centre-back; knowing what to do when I haven't got the ball."

The youngster is very young and under the guidance of those specialising in youth coaching at Liverpool, Ibe has all the capabilities to establish himself in the Premier League in the coming years.

Keep your eyes peeled for the progress of Jordon Ibe in the near future.

 

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Topics:
Premier League
Liverpool
Wycombe Wanderers
Football
Preston North End

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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