James Maddison has come a long way since he was strutting his stuff against Burton, Port Vale and Gillingham in the third tier of English football.
A revelation during his debut season at Leicester City, Maddison created more chances than any other Premier League player in 2018/19, leaving Eden Hazard, Mesut Ozil and Paul Pogba trailing in his wake. It’s now only a matter of time before he makes a long-awaited and well-deserved debut for Gareth Southgate’s England.
But, while Maddison became a household name in the yellow and green of Norwich City, it should not be forgotten that it was at Coventry City where the 22-year-old burst onto the scene.
A fabulous 2015/16 season with the Sky Blues paved the way for a move to Norwich and the Coventry-born play-maker has gone from strength to strength ever since. Just three years after becoming a first-team regular at the Ricoh Arena, Maddison was heading to the Premier League in a deal worth £20 million, as reported by the BBC.
From Spotland, Oakwell and Roots Hall to Old Trafford, Anfield and The Emirates in the blinking of an eye.
The New Maddison?
Aston Villa will certainly be hoping that Callum O'Hare can have a similar impact in the West Midlands.
Like Maddison, creativity comes naturally to this Solihull-born 21-year-old. A velvet-toed number ten with an eye for a goal and a defence-splitting pass, O’Hare is arguably the brightest talent to emerge out of Villa’s Bodymoor Heath academy since a certain floppy-haired skipper.
With the path to Aston Villa’s first team blocked for the time being, O’Hare has joined Coventry on loan and, in Mark Robins, he will work with a coach who will only encourage his innate gifts.
“He is a naturally talented footballer, with great creative ability and an eye for goal too,” Robins told Coventry Live.
““He is at the stage of his development where it is important for him to get regular minutes in league football, and we look forward to working with him this season.”
Maddison sets a high benchmark but O’Hare certainly has all the raw talent to follow in the footsteps of one of England’s most influential attacking midfielders.
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