A big fish in a small pond?
If you’ve been paying attention to the U23 side, then you’ll know who I’m talking about, but for those of you who don’t, then let me introduce you to him.
I spoke on Wednesday about the future of Odin Bailey, and how he has been bouncing around close to the first team, and how he needs to be settled in to either first-team football or U23 football. In the end I felt it was best for the club to pursue sending him out on loan, that way he’d be able to develop and come back in a position to challenge next summer.
On that same note, I think we need to have the same discussion about another one of the club’s fine U23 players, and that’s Jack Concannon.
Whenever you watch or read about the U23 side, you’d be forgiven for thinking that he was the only player on the pitch, such is the amount of times he dictates play for the side, as well as scoring the odd goals or two. Indeed, he went and scored the winner during their recent win against Cardiff City to top things all off.
It’s clear that he is just too good to be playing with the U23 side and facing off against kids on a weekly basis, and although he was sent out to Sutton Coldfield Town last season, it just isn’t quite the same as what a long, sustained period of time playing with a senior side will do for his development.
The Blues have clearly got a fine academy system set up, with the likes of Jude Bellingham and the aforementioned Bailey coming through, but there just isn’t the opportunity for all of them to flourish at the club at the same time.
Should Jack Conannon be sent out on loan?
And if the club can’t accommodate them, then they have to do their best to find someone who can. At the end of the day, the club isn’t going to survive or die based on the results of its U23 side, but if it fails to develop a talent that could help them in the future, then it will certainly be a stumbling block for them.