Everton have produced a number of excellent young prospects over the years and Sean Dyche could be the latest manager to unearth a gem from the academy.
The likes of Wayne Rooney and Ross Barkley have progressed through the ranks before excelling in the Premier League at Goodison Park and going on to be capped at international level for England.
Anthony Gordon is the latest example of a successful academy graduate after the winger earned the club a guaranteed fee of £40m, which could rise to £45m, when he moved to Newcastle United in January.
The 22-year-old scored seven goals and provided eight assists in 78 first-team appearances in all competitions for the Toffees after breaking into the first-team and Dyche could unearth the club’s next version of the English dynamo in a current U21 forward; Sean McAllister.
Who is Sean McAllister?
McAllister is a versatile attacking midfielder who plays for Everton’s U21 side in the Premier League 2 as a winger or number ten and is an international for Northern Ireland at U19 level.
The 20-year-old excelled for the club’s U18s – scoring 12 goals and providing ten assists in 37 appearances – and has become a regular in the upper age group this season.
Everton’s U21 side compete in the EFL Trophy against Football League opposition and the youngster caught the eye in two outings against Morecambe and Hartlepool earlier this season.
The gem scored once and produced three assists, while creating three chances and winning 48% of his duels, in those two matches – averaging a Sofascore rating of 8.04.
McAllister has racked up three goals and six assists in 12 appearances in all competitions this season – a goal contribution every 1.33 matches on average.
In comparison, Gordon managed eight goals and five assists in 28 outings at the same academy level – a contribution every 2.15 games – and this suggests that the current Toffees starlet is performing to a higher level than the now-Newcastle ace was during his time in the youth side.
Coach Kevin Thellwell one said that he was left “over the moon” when McAllister was promoted to his group from the U18s and the maestro’s superb statistics this term help to explain why the boss was so excited by the prospect of working with him.
If the young wizard can continue his fine form until the end of the season then first-team manager Dyche may be tempted to offer the talent a chance to impress in pre-season, which could lead to him pushing on and being the next Gordon at Everton.
Indeed, his statistics indicate that the 20-year-old has the potential to follow in the Toon star’s footsteps.