Have Southampton Unearthed Another Teenage Sensation ?
Tuesday, 26th Apr 2022 15:33
Saints have been producing great youngsters since the 1950's when the likes of Terry Paine & John Sydenham, but it seems there may be another one coming through the ranks after 16 year old Tyler Dibling scored a hat trick for the B Team at Newcastle United.
Over the past 70 years Saints have made a name for themselves as a club by producing talent that has gone on to play at the highest level, the youngest to make his debut was of course Theo Walcott who made his first appearance aged just 16 years 4 months and 21 days when he played against Wolves on the opening day of the 2005/06 season.
Second youngest was Gareth Bale at 16 years 6 months and 16 days when he played against Huddersfield in League One in March 2011.
But both of those debuts came outside of the Premier League, meaning that the accolade of being the youngest player to play for the club in the Premier League falls to Luke Shaw, he was 17 years and 4 months old when he came on as a 82nd minute sub at West Brom in November 2012.
James Ward Prowse would have briefly been the youngest Saints player when he played against Manchester City in the opening game of 2012/13 season at 17 years 9 months and Michael Obafemi at the moment is the second youngest to play for the club in the Premier League at 17 years 6 months & 15 days.
But there could be someone breaking through that could yet become the youngest player to play in the Premier League for the team, Tyler Dibling scored a hat trick for the Saints B Team at Newcastle United and is being tipped to match some of the exalted players mentioned.
Little is known about the youngster who hails from Axminster, a report in the Axminster news back in October 2021 informs us that he has signed for Southampton on an academy deal, but also says that he is still only 15 suggesting that even now he is still at School at least for the next month or so,
Reports say that he is 16 now, so although his exact date of birth is not known, he is perhaps 16 years 6 months tops, that means that if he were to make his debut by the turn of the year, he could well break Luke Shaw's record as the youngest player to turn out in the Premier League.
Southampton B team coach David Horseman has heaped praise on the 16-year-old, after Dibling grabbed the headlines for his hat-trick, with his strikes being likened to former Southampton star Gareth Bale.
"Incredible, to be honest. He is clearly a clever learner, because we didn't have much time to work on things yesterday, but he picked up what we wanted and got into those spaces and he was so clinical," Horseman said, speaking to the club website.
The youngest player to play for the club in the top flight is someone that perhaps few under the age of 50 would have heard of, Allan Tankard was 16 years 11 months & 12 days old when an injury crisis meant that he had to play for Saints at Everton in May 1986.
Photo: Action Images
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