Sports Writer, Alex Davis, looks ahead to next season and which League One players to keep an eye on.

3rd year Economic and Social History student. I love writing about sports and have a particular interest in lower league football.
Published
Images by SUFCboy

5. Tom Hopper (Scunthorpe United)

It would be safe to say that it’s not been an easy couple of months for 21-year-old Tom Hopper.

In May, Hopper became embroiled in a scandal when the Sunday Mirror exposed a sex tape he and two other Leicester City players had made whilst on tour in Thailand. The tape, which captured the trio using racist language towards the Thai women involved, eventually cost Hopper and his team mates their jobs.

A month later and the striker had made the move to North Lincolnshire to join League One Scunthorpe United. Hopper spent time on loan at Glanford Park in the 2014/15 season scoring four goals in six games and narrowly missing out on January’s player of the month trophy to Tottenham bound Dele Alli. The striker finds himself in England’s third tier due to off the pitch stupidity but his misfortune could well turn out to be a stroke of luck for Scunthorpe.

 

4. Che Adams (Sheffield United)

Beating off serious competition to sign Adams from Ilkeston in November of last season, the Blades may well have a future star on their hands.

At only 18 years of age, it’s a big ask but he’s already proven he has the temperament to deal with big games.

The youngster made quite the impact in his debut season with United, scoring twice against Tottenham in the League Cup semi-final and grabbing a goal in the thrilling play-off semi-final second leg against Swindon Town which ended 5-5. Sheffield United struggled for goals at times last season and Adams could prove to be the difference between another disappointing season and their long anticipated return to the Championship.

 

The then 17-year-old scored a stunning free kick on his Gresty Road debut in October and didn’t look back, making 25 appearances in all competitions.

3. George Cooper (Crewe Alexandra)

Crewe Alexandra have an impressive record when it comes to producing young talent; think Danny Murphy, Dean Ashton, and Nick Powell. The next young player who seems destined for greater things is midfielder George Cooper.

His impressive performances earned him the ‘League One apprentice of the year’ award and his dynamic playing style looks set to be central to Crewe’s hopes of a more successful 2015/16. Don’t be surprised to see Cooper following in the footsteps of former Alex players and moving to the Premier League within a few years.

 

2. Joe Gormley (Peterborough United)

Craig Mackail-Smith, Britt Assombalonga and George Boyd have all starred in Peterborough United’s strike-force in recent years.

133 games, 85 goals and titles including ‘Northern Ireland Football Writer’s Player of the Year’ later and the forward finds himself tasked with leading Posh’s frontline.

Posh seem to have a knack for finding goal scorers and it looks as though they may well have got their hands on another this summer in the shape of Joe Gormley. 61 goals in the 2010/11 season at Northern Irish amateur side Crumlin Star prompted Cliftonville to take a punt on the Belfast-born striker and it would be safe to say that he’s repaid their faith.

At 25, it’s now or never for Gormley but if his previous strike-record anything to go by, he should have no problem with establishing himself at the top of League One’s goal scoring charts.

 

1. George Green (Oldham Athletic)

Being compared to players such as Paul Gascoigne and Wayne Rooney can do more damage than good. Like Jose Baxter before him, George Green has left Goodison Park for the bright lights of Oldham this summer despite seemingly having had the world at his feet. Everton bought Green from Bradford City in 2011 for a fee which could have reached £2m with add-ons, fighting off competition from Tottenham Hotspur and Bayern Munich and leading the Metro to call the youngster the ‘new Wayne Rooney’. No pressure kid. However, since then Green has battled with personal issues and has not lived up to his potential. Despite having represented his country at junior levels, the Yorkshireman found himself on loan at relegation-bound Tranmere Rovers towards the end of last season. A stunning debut strike for Rovers wasn’t enough to convince Everton to renew his contract and Green found himself without a club. First team football could be just the tonic needed to resurrect this 19 year olds career and his signing could well be a stroke of genius by rookie manager Darren Kelly.

Time will tell, but this could be the fresh start that Green needs to begin to fulfil his enormous potential.

Comments