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The young guns

Nottingham Forest currently has 10 young guns pushing to break into the first team squad. Those 10 players consist of Vincent Fernandez, Alan Power, Robert Hughes, Hamza Bencherif, Lewis McGugan, Paddy Gamble, Felix Bastians, Spencer Weir-Daley, Shane Redmond and Dale Roberts.

Vincent Fernandez- was signed at the end of the 2005 season after a successful trial. The French man was playing in the French Second division when he was spotted by Forest scouts and offered a scholarship. After a successful first season Vincent was offered a 1 year deal and so far has been solid again in the reserves this season and has had loan spells with Blackpool, Grays Athletic and Wycombe in which he didn't impress as much as Forest were hoping but is back pushing for the first team again.

Defender centre

His chances of making it 7/10

Alan Power who was signed in a triple swoop along with Shane Redmond and Brendon Maloney last summer from Ireland
has been training with the first team squad and has been showing some positive performances in the reserve but hasn't managed to break into the first team squad just yet. This may be down to his size as his build is small compared to players similar in age to him Lewis McGugan and Felix Bastians. Alan Power needs to perform over full 90 minutes which is something I have noted as he seems to fade in and out of games.

Midfield centre

His chances of making it 6/10

Robert Hughes- After unsuccessful trials with his home town club peterborough he was spotted by Forest scouts and was signed after a successful trial. Robert Hughes was from the same group of Academy players which didn't make the grade with his fellow players Martin Vickerton, Danny Blair, Ricky Hanson and Andrew Rigby who were all highly rated at one time being let go in the summer with Robert being one of only four players offered new deals. This season has seen him pushing for the first team but over the recent months it has seen Lewis McGugan move ahead of him in Colin Calderwood's first team plans. Robert is a player I can not see making the grade at the club because I feel the club has better midfield players then him at the club and even when the club let Ross Gardner and James Beaumont leave he didn't seem to force his way into the first team squad.

Midfield centre

His chances of making it 5/10

Hamza Bencherif- Has performed well in the reserves this season after signing in the summer in a successful trial spell. He is a solid defender good with both feet and can head a ball well. He may need a loan spell at a lower League club in order for him to improve his game but I can fully see him being given a new deal and making the first team squad more often and his chances have greatly improve with the club letting John Thompson and Danny Cullip leave and I feel he has moved ahead of Vincent Fernandez and has become 4th choice within the club.

Defender Centre

His chances of making it 8/10

Lewis McGugan- You could say he has already made it has he has had first team games and he is the best prospect within the youth academy within the last 3 years but he has had his problems at the club in the previous years which he seems to have put behind him and has performed very well over the last two months in reserve and youth cup games scoring goals and an impressive free kick in the youth cup. Lewis is an attacking Midfielder which is something the club is short of but he has been focusing on his defensive skills this season which is making him a better overall player.

Midfield centre

His chances of making it 9/10

Paddy Gamble- He has struggled this season to find his form but is talented in front of goal and has been called up to the England Under 18's squad over the last few months. This season has seen him cover the first team bench but with recent illness and injuries has seen his rival Academy goalkeeper Shane Redmond be called up to the first team.

Goalkeeper

His chances of making it 7/10

Felix Bastians- He impressed most fans with his performances under Gary Megson but this season has seen him being sent out on loan for most of the season and his performances in the reserves haven't been impressive. He has a lot of potential and is very good with the ball at his feet but his overall game needs to improve. Having been signed from Germany in a similar way to Eugen Bopp was he may end up with a similar reputation to Eugen Bopp but he is under contract until 2008 so he still has time to change things around and hopefully his loan spells will make him a better player.

Midfield left

His chances of making it 7/10

Spencer Weir-Daley- He has been at the club since the age of 14 and was considered one of the best prospects at the club a few years ago but due to some bad injuries has seen him miss most of the last two seasons. He didn't seem to impress at Macclesfield but playing in a better team at Lincoln has seen him start to score League goals. With the competition strong at the club for strikers it will be interesting to see if the club offers him a new deal.

Striker

His chances of making it 7/10

Dale Roberts- He was the first player to be sent out on loan by the club this season. He has played almost all the games for Alfreton this season. He was signed from premiership side Middlesbrough two seasons ago after the academy becoming short of goalkeeping options. He chances maybe slim with the club having two international goalkeepers at the club both near the age of 18 in Paddy Gamble and Shane Redmond. He is out of contract in the summer and I could see the club letting him go.

Goalkeeper

His chances of making it 6/10

Shane Redmond is the youngest player in the ten listed and was signed along with Alan Power and Brendon Maloney two seasons ago. Shane Redmond has represented the Republic of Ireland at under 17's level and has been performing well at under 18's level this season at the club and has played a few reserve team games this season. I do not feel he is ready for the first team just yet but is a good prospect and one I hope the club can develop.

Goalkeeper

His chances of making it 7/10




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The Journalist

Writer:  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 16 2007

Time: 1:14PM

Your Comments

Good article inside, let's hope a couple of these can breakthrough and make the grade.
guinless
Good to have an opinion other than that of the NEP. Lest hope Lewis et al have very bright futures - we need them to.
wemaybefamousagain
 

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