|Would Reece Brown Be a Useful Addition to the ITFC Squad?|
Written by itfcjoe on Thursday, 13th Jun 2013 12:47
On the face of it, what is there to disagree with about signing Reece Brown – young, schooled at Manchester United, capped for England at youth level, even representing his country at the U20 World Cup two years ago.
However, just last season Brown had his loan spell at Coventry City cut short as he wasn’t getting enough games with the League One side. He subsequently joined Ipswich on loan, in what was effectively an extended trial, making one substitute appearance for the first team away at Nottingham Forest.
I spoke to a friend who has seen Brown numerous times for Manchester United youth ranks at the time of his initial loan, and his opinion of him was this:
"League One’s probably his level at the moment (and that’s maybe being generous) – seemed to start alright at Coventry before falling out of favour, similar story at Oldham I think.
"He’s got some decent raw attributes and should have a pro career somewhere but he’ll be doing pretty well to feature much for you guys and/or earn a permanent move I suspect."
I saw Brown for the U21s on at least three occasions and he never seemed to hugely impress, he’s big and quick – but always seemed to have a mistake in him. I’d like to put that down to him trying too hard to impress, and he was shifted around in positions frequently.
I think there is a decent player in there, and with his age, and the fact he can cover right-back, centre-back and a holding midfield role he would be a very useful addition to the squad.
Other than Tommy Smith and Luke Chambers, we do not have any other centre-backs at the club. The U18 centre-backs last year were George Fowler, who is still a schoolboy next season, and Omar Sowunmi, who is a very raw first-year scholar whose development will not be helped by playing above a level he is comfortable with. Matthew Clarke played there a few times and looks a good long-term bet to eventually end up there.
Brown is capable of being a very versatile substitute for the first team, who will get regular football for the U21s and be in a position to push on if the opportunity arises. He is physically gifted, and being in a more settled environment rather than constantly being on loan should allow him to settle down and develop more naturally.
It will be very difficult to sign an experienced centre-back to sit behind Smith and Chambers in the pecking order and Brown is exactly the sort of player we should be after, his wages will be relatively low and it is a low-risk piece of recruitment.
I hope to see Reece Brown in an ITFC shirt again next season.
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