While the Under-21s have been thriving, and the Under-18s have been struggling. But overall, September has been a month filled with opportunity, encouraging results, and positive performances.
The @norwichyouth September Team of the Month 2023:
There are four players who have made the Team of the Month for back-to-back months, highlighting their strong starts to the season. They are Waylon Renecke, Finley Welch, Emmanuel Adegboyega, and Uriah Djedje.
Caleb Ansen – GK
September was a pleasing month for Ansen, as he travelled with the first team squad on two occasions, as well as making his U21s debut against Wolves in the 21s EPL Cup.
His form has improved since August, making some pivotal saves across the U18s and U21s. Due to Norwich facing a lot of shots at their goal, at 18s level especially, Caleb has had the perfect platform to show his talent.
Ansen’s courageousness to continuously do the brave thing of playing out the back in tight areas is brilliant to see, as it speaks volumes for his bold personality.
Waylon Renecke – LB
Waylon gets into our Team of the Month, for the second month running, demonstrating his strong start to the season. His consistency of performance has been excellent, despite having to play two different positions (LB/CB) weekly.
One of the biggest elements of Renecke’s game across these last two months is his intelligence in defensive situations. For example, against Everton Renecke got into a good position to cut out a square ball across the box, which would have put the game beyond doubt for the hosts.
Also, Renecke’s maturity from a defensive perspective is continually developing, especially with the U21s where he has been impeccable at tracking runners, winning headers, and applying constant pressure.
Furthermore, Renecke contributed with a fine attacking performance against Wolves, showing quality with his crosses into the box. He almost ended the game vs. Wolves with an assist, with a fast-paced inswinging ball into the box. Not only did he show quality across the month, but he also showed relentless intent to play forwards and release the ball to the attacking thirds.
Charlie Wilson – CB
Charlie has arguably been one of the most consistent performers in the academy since his arrival in April 2023. He has predominantly played as a central defender as well as left-back in the Everton game.
Playing as a central defender in the Norwich U21s side requires deep concentration, across the game due to the expansive nature of the back line, playing incredibly wide. With this in mind, Wilson shows good positioning and composure to deal with this. Adding on from the positional perspective, Wilson demonstrated a disciplined performance as a left-back against Everton, winning many aerial duels from crosses, which was down to getting into good starting positions.
In addition, Wilson’s effectiveness at winning stand tackles is impressive, highlighting the difficulty for attackers to get past him. Across the month, he has defended in a composed nature, underlining his reliability to the team.
Emmanuel Adegboyega – CB
Similarly to Renecke, Adegboyega makes the team for the second successive month. September was a spectacular month for him from an attacking perspective, scoring twice and assisting once for a central defender. Both of Adegboyega’s goals came from set pieces, demonstrating his strength in the air from set pieces.
Emmanuel has continued to bring the attacking impetus in the month of September, making intense runs from deep, which create overloads in the middle and attacking third. However, he also gets in high positions to get tight to the opposition strikers, which leads to him winning the ball and manipulating the free space occupied by the opposition.
Across the month, Adegboyega performed many last-minute blocks/challenges which saved the team on many occasions. A last-minute slide tackle away at Leicester being the prime example, which earned the team the three points, epitomised Adegboyega’s influence on the team.
Finley Welch – RB
Welch has been deployed in two positions this month, one of which is at ST and the other at RB. Welch has delivered lively performances in both of those roles, giving the team that extra attacking dynamic in the final third.
One of Welch’s biggest strengths, which he demonstrated consistently over last month, was his ability to play passes at the correct times, especially in attacking scenarios. Fin’s specialty in replicating this consistently helps build partnerships across the team, which leads to the team being a bigger goal threat.
On the topic of one of Welch’s main strengths, he has been excellent at driving the ball forward this month, progressing the team up the field at any given opportunity. Due to Welch being exceptional at this, the opposition committed numerous fouls on him resulting in yellow cards.
I have no doubt Welch will want to turn those positive performances into goals and assists, as that’s ultimately the biggest currency.
Harry Brooke – CM
Brooke had an astounding September, assisting twice and scoring once in three games, underlining his technical quality.
One main conclusion explaining his success this month is his quality from set pieces. Brooke’s reliability of delivering crosses into the box from corner situations is brilliant, giving the taller players something to attack on most occasions.
Moreover, the pleasing element of Brooke’s month is the simplistic attributes he adds to the team. Every successful side needs that disciplined figure in midfield, dropping close to the centre-backs in order for the team to build an attack. That aligns with Harry’s game perfectly, as well as his ability to keep the ball effectively in the middle phases of the pitch.
Harry’s goal against Wolves in the EPL Cup was a nice finish, anticipating the ball first before any Wolves player. He will need to continue to delve into the goals/assists territory, in order for the first team to potentially make note of his progress.
Uriah Djedje – CM
Across last month, Uriah has been experimented in the number eight role, further forward, than his original role of number six. This was showcased against Wolves in the EPL Cup, with Djedje starting in the box-to-box role, rather than anchoring the midfield.
Similarly to August, Djedje’s improvement in finding accurate forward passes has been promising, and almost registered an assist vs. Wolves, if it wasn’t for the opposition defender cutting it out at the right time.
During the game Uriah played with the U21s, his intensity in possession was brilliant, combining and receiving the ball off his fellow teammates with superb speed and composure. Speaking on the subject of speed, Djedje’s ability to press efficiently and get tight to the opponents across 18s/21s level is sublime, which leads to him winning many turnovers.
Due to his consistent performances, Djedje will be playing more games with the U21s, which will enhance his development.
Miles Bracking – CM
Miles could have easily made the August Team of the Month, but he, unfortunately, fell short due to the goalscoring form of Adian Manning. Miles operates as a box-to-box midfielder, having a tendency to drive on the ball with real comfort, as well as getting into good defensive positions to combat the opposition making progress.
Bracking’s performance levels have been exceptional recently, especially winning back possession from opponents. During the Southampton(A) and Chelsea (H) encounters, Bracking regained possession 10+ times, making him the most successful Norwich player in winning the ball back, alongside Uriah Djedje (Djedje only completed this against Chelsea).
Moreover, Bracking offers various eccentric traits, with one of those being his canny runs from deep, which are often escalated to a defence-splitting pass. With the U18s having limited threat in wide areas, there are players in the central areas tasked with stepping up their performance, contributing from an attacking and defensive perspective. Bracking has lived up to that expectation well so far, with plenty of promise attached.
In addition to that, Miles played in every minute of the U18PL during September, underlining his ability to be an effective mechanism in the team, throughout the 90 minutes.
Elliot Myles – CAM
Sometimes, it only takes one captivating performance to reach the September Team of the Month, and this resonates with U18s attacker, Elliot Myles. Myles scored a brace vs. Chelsea while securing an assist and winning a penalty kick. To add, his second goal was of high quality, controlling a venomous ball from Sealey before finding the bottom left corner brilliantly.
Elliot’s vision has been absolutely impeccable across September, and throughout his early career, finding his teammates at every given opportunity. Myles has also been effective at winning fouls lately due to the direct nature of the player.
Ken Aboh – ST
Ken is currently the second top goalscorer, amongst the U18s and U21 teams this season, with three goals and all of them coming last month, meaning an average of a goal per game.
To add a justification to Aboh’s promising numbers, Ken’s composure in front of goal has been ruthless this month, showing high levels of confidence in front of goal. A goal that demonstrated this was vs. Wolves, and Aboh received a defence-splitting pass from Warner, which he tucked away across the goal nicely.
In addition to that, Aboh’s power and speed can terrify any PL2 defence as he can carry the ball huge distances up the pitch. A case study that reflects this was against Leicester U21s in which Aboh ran from deep, utilised his body strength before scoring a spectacular long-range effort, on the turn. Although Aboh has been guilty of missing some big chances before this month, he always has the capability of doing something special, at any moment.
Damari Daley – ST
During the month of September, Daley went on a hot streak of three successive games, contributing with goals and assists for the Canaries. At U18s level, Daley won a penalty away at Southampton and scored a lovely goal from a difficult angle against Chelsea. In between those games, Damari netted a brace for the U17s against Aston Villa.
Alluding back to the penalty he won against Southampton, Daley showed immense pace and sharpness to get into that dangerous area, forcing the Saints player to act illegally. Daley’s acceleration is one of his biggest attributes, allowing him to get himself into good scoring positions.
Moreover, similarly to Aboh, Damari seems to have discovered some confidence in front of goal which is imperative for the U18s as well as his current development. With Norwich being forced to play on the counterattack most games, Daley’s characteristics could be pivotal for the team as he provides raw pace and renewed confidence in front of goal.