Rob Lee says son could have been West Ham's answer to Spurs star Harry Kane

West Ham United's Elliot Lee on the bench

Rob Lee says his son Elliot could have been West Ham United's answer to Harry Kane, had he been given the chance.

Pic : Action ImagesRob Lee in his Newcastle days

The former England international and Newcastle United favourite supported West Ham as a boy and ended his career with the East Londoners under Alan Pardew.

Since retiring he has watched both his sons Olly and now Elliot try but fail to make it with the Hammers.

Elliot, now at Barnsley, was heralded the next Tony Cottee after impressing more and more as he progressed through West Ham's famed Academy.

West Ham United's Elliot Lee on the benchElliot Lee on the bench for West Ham

Big Sam wasn't a fan

The stocky striker scored plenty of goals at youth and reserve team level but his big change of first team football at Upton Park proved elusive under former boss Sam Allardyce.

When Big Sam departed for Sunderland many fans thought Lee would finally get the chance he deserved under Slaven Bilic, a manager famed for promoting youth.

It looked like they were right when Lee scored the only goal in a 1-0 win on his first senior start in last season's Europa League qualifiers.

However, that was it for Lee at West Ham and he was released at the end of the season.

The decision doesn't sit comfortably with his dad, though.

Elliot Lee scores the first goal for West HamElliot Lee scoring his first and only senior goal for West Ham on his one and only start

'Elliot was never really given a chance'

Writing in his column for the Chronicle in the wake of Elliot's release last month, Rob said his son could have been West Ham's answer to Spurs star Harry Kane and believes he would have flourished alongside Andy Carroll.

"I know he’s my son and I’m biased, but I know how good he is because I’ve watch him develop over the years," Rob wrote in the Chronicle.

"At West Ham, I thought he deserved a chance over the likes of Emmanuel Emenike and Nikica Jelavic, both of who just sat on the bench.

"Elliot was never really given a chance even though he scored in the Europa League - and I really believe he would have done well alongside big Andy Carroll. You never know how good someone is going to be until you give them a Premier League chance; just look at Harry Kane."

West Ham manager Slaven BilicWest Ham manager Slaven Bilic

A damning indictment from Bilic proved Allardyce was right all along

Like Spurs, Hammers fans love nothing more than to see a homegrown youngster graduate into a first team star.

Kane has been a revelation at White Hart Lane and there has been a degree of jealousy from London rivals at his success.

But Lee's release from West Ham was a pretty damning indictment of Bilic's opinion of the young Englishman.

Age cannot be a factor because the former Croatia boss proved in the case of 16-year-old Reece Oxford, if he feels a player is good enough he will play them.

As hard as it might be for Hammers fans to swallow perhaps Sam Allardyce has been somewhat vindicated, although they always look out for one of their own and will be hoping Lee goes on to carve a career out for himself.

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