David Unsworth urges Mason Holgate to follow Galloway and Stones route

Everton Goodison

The Under 21 boss was quick to praise the young defender's versatility.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Everton Under 21 coach David Unsworth has urged youngster Mason Holgate to follow the path laid out by Brendan Galloway and John Stones.

Holgate was signed from League 1 side Barnsley in the summer in a £1m transfer, as reported by the Daily Mail, and was added to the Blues’ Under 21 squad, in which he has quickly impressed.

He has been a part of the first-team squad on several occasions since then, including last weekend’s draw with West Ham United.

At just 19-years-old, he is unlikely to be starting any time soon, though, and Unsworth was keen to remind fans that he is a long-term project for the Blues.

“That has got to be Mason’s mindset," Unsworth responded when asked if those two should be his role models by the Liverpool Echo.

“He is not a first-team player yet, he is a development player and he’s a long-term project. We think very highly of him otherwise we would not have brought him to the club but it is a long-term project with him and the work has got to be done, and will be done.”

Holgate is regarded as being at his best when deployed at centre half, but he can operate in a number of positions.

That is something both Galloway and Stones have shown in the first-team so far, with Galloway being used at left-back and Stones having filled in at right-back on occasion.

And Unsworth says that versatility is an essential quality for a player to have in the modern game.

“I think Mason sees himself more as a centre-half but there is a nice flexibility there,” he added.

“The modern day player has to have two or three positions under his belt to get into a first-team squad and it is better for any player if they can play in a number of positions, as we’ve seen with Tyias Browning.”

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