Swansea's Garry Monk urges caution over Tom Carroll and Modou Barrow

Tom Carroll low quality

Swansea City manager Garry Monk is wary of asking too much from on-loan Tottenham Hotspur starlet Tom Carroll and Gambian winger Modou Barrow.

‘If they’re good enough, they’re old enough’, is a phrase often applied to emerging talent as it seeks to make an impact on the grandest of stages.

That rule certainly applies to those looking to forge a Premier League career, with more and more top-flight bosses prepared to take a punt on players of promise.

Turning to academy graduates or bringing in youngsters on loan from rivals unable to offer regular first-team opportunities can be a profitable approach, with important funds saved in an era of eye-watering transfer fees and Financial Fair Play.

Spotting potential – be that on British shores or around the world – is an activity which has seen an ever-increasing amount of emphasis placed on it.

Swansea City are among those to have put their faith in youth this season, with £1.5 million invested in exciting Gambian winger Modou Barrow and a season-long agreement struck with Tottenham Hotspur for highly-rated midfielder Tom Carroll.

Both men arrived in South Wales with senior minutes under their respective belts - but with little to no experience of life in the English top-flight of which to speak.

Swans boss Garry Monk has sought to ease the pair into his plans as a result and maintains that expectation levels should remain realistic for both despite the promise they have shown so far.

He said in the South Wales Evening Post: “Mo's fearless and you often get that with young players. I want him to go out there, enjoy it and play with freedom.

"He's not a senior player. He's still got to learn a lot but he's earned the right to be with the first team. That's the way it should be for young players. It's a process for him. He's someone we'll protect. We'll give him games when we can and see how he develops. We have to be very careful with that type of player.

"Tom's improving. He's a great lad, he works very hard and we want to improve him individually as well. He's not a very experienced player so we have to be mindful of that. We have to make sure we select the right games for him to play in. But he's improving which is great for us. He understands the group ethic and the way we work."

  Total PassesAccurate PassesTotal CrossesInterceptions WonTotal TacklesTouchesAppearancesMinutes Played
Tom Carroll 185 167 0 2 7 221 6 271
Modou Barrow 4 0 2 2 1 22 2 36

Barrow was handed his Premier League bow against Arsenal prior to the international break, before going on to catch the eye during a 2-1 defeat to Manchester City on Saturday.

That is some baptism of fire, against two potential title challengers, but the 22-year-old did not look out of place.

Carroll, meanwhile, has made three starts and six top-flight appearances in total, offering glimpses of the vision and ball-playing ability which has made him an England Under-21 international and a man tipped for a bright future at White Hart Lane.

Monk is right to urge caution over the talented duo - but he has also seen enough to know what they are capable of and to be aware that the time is fast approaching for them to be let off their leash and to prove that age and inexperience really is no barrier.

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