By Robson Sharuko
Zimbabwe teenage football sensation, Tristan Nydam, (pictured) could be on the verge of making a huge leap in his fledgling career after he was singled out by the coach of his English Championship club, Mick McCarthy, as the star that is shining brightest among club’s Academy players.
That Nydam should be receiving such lavish praise from McCarthy, among a group of vastly-talented Ipswich Town youngsters who include Andre Dozzell and Ben Morris — a duo that has broken into the England team playing in the European Under-17 Championship finals in Azerbaijan — speaks volumes about the talent of the rising Zimbabwe midfielder.
Nydam, who was born in this country on November 6, 1999 and did his primary school education here before relocating with his mother to stay in England, is already being wooed by English football authorities to embark on a career that will see him playing for the English senior national team.
He has been put on stand-by for the England team playing in the European Under-17 Championships where his Ipswich Academy teammates, Dozzell and Morris, are making a big impression with the former even suggesting that he wants to make as huge an impact, in his game, as England captain Wayne Rooney.
Morris scored one of the goals in England’s 2-0 win over France on Monday night in their European Under-17 Championships tie while Dozzell played a starring role in that match as he supplied both goals that powered the team to their victory.
Dozzell wants to fashion his career along the lines of such English stars like Wayne Rooney, James Milner and Ross Barkley who starred for the England Under-17 national team before they became household names.
“People like Wayne Rooney, James Milner and Jack Butland have all taken part in this tournament so the experience here is definitely a valuable one for me and the rest of my teammates,” Dozzell told the official England FA website.
Ipswich coach McCarthy, who is wanted by Aston Villa, a club that has fallen from the grace of beating Bayern Munich to win the 1982 European Cup to being relegated from the English Premiership this season, believes Nydam is the real deal among the host of starlets who are making waves at Ipswich Town.
“They’re generally miles off the first team at that age group, certainly coming in,” he told the Independent Ipswich Town website.
“There’s the certain odd one that stands out, as Dozzell has, as Bish did actually, as a kid with his ability. I see them everyday because we’re all in the same building and on a lot of occasions they train with us.
“There’s many a Monday morning where we just put them all together and have a big seven, eight or nine-a-side competition and just have a look at them, just to get the first-teamers who have played (at the weekend) back playing and we let them join in.
“So I do get a good viewing of them, I see quite a bit of them. I’ve not seen them play matches because they play on a Saturday.
“Tristan Nydam, he’s a really good player.
“I won’t go through them all because I don’t know all their names off the top of my head, but he’s the one that’s stood out for us.
“There are a couple of them, actually. They’ve trained with us, they’ve trained with the first team. What’s always nice when they train with the first team is that the first-teamers go, ‘I like that!’
“Some of the older players, the likes of Chambo, Skusey and Dougie, they recognise when they’ve trained against them (and they’ve been impressed) and will ask who they are. There are two or three of them who have stood out.”
Ipswich Town legend Russell Osman wants McCarthy, should he resist the approaches of Villa who want him to take over as their manager as they fight for a quick return to the English top-flight league, to assemble his team around the club’s band of exciting youngsters.
“Ben looks a willing and able runner up front. He was very clever with his movement for the first goal,” Osman told the East Anglian Daily Times.
“Andre comes alive in the final third. He’s got a good touch, a lovely left foot and has that natural creative ability that not a lot of players possess.
“Midfield players that run around and do a job are important, but they are 10 a penny. It’s harder to find the ones that can create something out of nothing. Andre has a very intelligent football brain.
“Mick McCarthy found a way to accommodate Teddy Bishop, so hopefully he can find a way to accommodate Andre Dozzell.
“There are others coming through too. I know Tristan Nydam quite well and he has a lot of potential, Kundai Benyu (midfielder) is a good player and I’m a big fan of Josh Emmanuel — I think he’s a man ready for first-team football who just needs a chance.
“The club stated back in 2013 that they wanted half of the first-team squad to be homegrown by 2017 and they are heading the right way to achieving that.
“It’s now about whether the manager is able to find room for them in his team and whether he has the patience to allow them to progress.
“If you’re going to spend a fortune on your Academy then the manager has to use the players you produce otherwise what’s the point?” The Herald