Tottenham Hotspur Youth Prospects Who Could Make Premier League Debuts Next Term
Who are the next generation of youngsters primed to roll off the Tottenham Hotspur production line and go straight into first-team action under new manager Mauricio Pochettino?
Spurs' Youth Academy, under John McDermott, have been tasked with creating the future of the club, but which players are ready to make their Premier League debuts next season?
The youth system at Spurs has not produced the kind of prodigious talent the club's fans have been screaming for in recent years. Tottenham fans have to go back many-a-year to remember the world-class talents to have come through the club.
Men like Glenn Hoddle and Ledley King and, lest we say his name, Sol Campbell have all come through the ranks at Spurs.
Recent graduates like Steven Caulker, Jake Livermore, Harry Kane, Tom Carroll, Nabil Bentaleb and Andros Townsend are all dreaming of becoming the next Hoddle or the next King and are well placed to take the Premier League by storm over the next couple of years.
But what about the next generation of youngsters? Who are the graduates that will catch Pochettino's eye and make it into the first-team squad next season?
Here, Bleacher Report offers five Spurs youngsters on the cusp of making their debuts in 2014-15.
Cristian Ceballos is a former student at the famous La Masia Academy at FC Barcelona and was snapped up by Spurs in 2011.
Spurs signed the youngster after a successful trial following his release by Barca earlier that season. Ceballos, hugely technically gifted and with an impressive work rate, was told to be patient, upon his signing, by Tim Sherwood, the then-youth-team manager, as per the Daily Mail, and to earn his chance at the club.
Ceballos could be forgiven for thinking the boat had sailed on making his breakthrough at Spurs when Sherwood was sacked from his duties as first-team manager at the end of last season.
However, Mauricio Pochettino's capture as first-team manager will have come as a huge boost to all involved in the youth system at Spurs.
The Argentinean is a firm believer of giving youth a chance and has promoted academy players at both Espanyol and the Saints to first-team duties. Ceballos has been given an immediate boost by being included in Tottenham's pre-season tour of America and featured extensively against Seattle Sounders in their opening game.
The attacking midfielder-cum-forward is comfortable anywhere in the final third of the pitch and is clever, fit and technically gifted. Coming from Barcelona, he is already ingrained with a proactive philosophy and will find it easier, than any other youth player at Spurs, to fit into Pochettino's system.
Saying that, Ceballos faces a tough task to break into the Spurs team as Lewis Holtby, Andros Townsend, Aaron Lennon, Eric Lamela, Paulinho, Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen and fellow graduate Iago Falque are all vying for position.
Ceballos' flexibility and ability to play both wide and through the center gives him an advantage unafforded by almost any first-team player. Expect him to make an appearance this season.
Shaquile Coulthirst will be a name well known to those who have followed Tottenham's youth squads over the last couple of years. The freescoring forward has garnered much attention for his exploits in front of goals and has even been tracked by the likes of FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, as per the Metro.
Shaq joined Spurs in 2011 and immediately started hitting the back of the net as he bagged 12 goals in 24 games for the Under-18s and Under-21s teams.
He then had a blistering season in 2012-13 where he scored 19 goals in 29 appearances across Tottenham's Under-18s, NextGen and Under-21s teams. This tally included a memorable hat-trick in Barcelona as Spurs destroyed Barca's NextGen team 4-1.
Last season, the hierarchy at Spurs decided it was time for the youngster to start gaining game-time experience. He was sent on loan to Leyton Orient and then to Torquay toward the end of the season.
He scored on his debut with Orient with a typically taken strikers goal from just inside the box. The youngster followed that up with two goals in five starts for Torquay United.
Coulthirst is capable of playing on either flank and comes with blistering pace, quick feet and great upper-body strength for one so young. He does, however, prefer playing through the centre.
Next season will be crucial for the 19-year-old. He has already made his Tottenham debut when replacing Roberto Soldado in the Europa League last December. He now has his heart set on making his Premier League bow before the end of next season and already has his eye on representing England at the next World Cup in 2018.
Ryan Fredericks is one of the few youth players guaranteed to play some part at Spurs next season.
Fredericks started out life at Tottenham as an attacking right-sided midfielder and scored seven goals in 16 appearances for the Under-18s in his debut season in 2009-10.
However, it was deemed his future was as an attack-minded full-back and in the intervening years he has developed as a defender at a rapid pace. Fredericks made his full debut in 2011 against Hearts in the Europa League, but he has had to wait some time before making another appearance.
Following a highly successful spell at Millwall last season, Fredericks was promoted to the first-team squad for the tour of America and featured against Seattle in the opening game of the tour. Looking edgy, he eventually found his way into the game an contributed more in an attacking sense than defensively. He caused many problems for the Sounders and covered his side of the pitch with great pace.
Mauricio Pochettino uses his full-backs extensively and greatly developed the skill-set of both Luke Shaw and Nathaniel Clyne. Fredericks will be hoping for more of the same as he looks to leap-frog Kyle Naughton who suffered a torrid time when deputizing for Kyle Walker last season.
Souleymane Coulibaly has long been touted as the next big thing at Tottenham Hotspur.
He made his name with a player-of-the-tournament performance at the Under-17 World Cup in 2011, where he scored an astonishing nine goals in four matches. This included hat-tricks against both Denmark and Brazil.
In 2011-12, he proved almost unstoppable in front of goal for Spurs as he continued his goalscoring exploits across the Under-18s, the NextGen team and the FA Youth Cup team. This included a phenomenal performance against Inter Milan in the NextGen tournament where he scored twice and inspired Spurs to an unbelievable 7-1 win over the Italian giants.
Last season saw his development continue as he was surprisingly sent on loan to Serie B team Grosseto where he scored just twice in 12 games. The transfer gave the youngster a chance to visit and see his family on a regular basis as they are based in Italy.
The experience, however, has proved enlightening and rewarding for the youth, who told Sky Sports he hoped to make the breakthrough at Spurs this coming season.
With goals being few and far between last season, Coulibaly should be the best placed of Tottenham's youth strikers to make his bow next year.
Harry Winks is a name worth looking out for. The versatile 18-year-old has featured for Tottenham's Under-18s for the past two seasons to much acclaim and was promoted to first-team affairs by Tim Sherwood.
Winks was named in the matchday squads for Liverpool and Benfica last season, but never made it onto the pitch. However, the very fact he was named against such opponents speaks volumes for the faith the club have in the youngster.
Winks featured prominently for Spurs Under-21s in their 2-0 win over Arsenal in March and followed that up by scoring the winner against Germany Under-18s in April. As a result of his fine displays, Winks was awarded a two-year professional contract at the end of the season.
Comfortable on the ball and capable of ghosting into the box, Winks is an exciting prospect. He will feature regularly for Tottenham's Under-21 team next season and will continue to push for first-team action.
It would not surprise if we see the youngster feature in the League Cup or toward the end of the season as Spurs push his development further.
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