Joe was given his debut by Gareth Southgate away to West Ham in last game of the 2008/2009 Season. One that sealed our relegation from the Premier League. He was one of the bright spots on a miserable day. Franks was also given his debut at Upton Park. Mixed emotions for the youngsters that day.
The young left back got a taste of first team action last season under the previous managers and at one stage wanted a loan move as he was frustrated and down under the previous manager. Tony Mowbray give him a new lease of life give him confidence and belief to go out and enjoy his football.
Joe recently agreed a long contract deal with the club and this week was called up to the Under 21 Squad to play Italy. Joe was given his England U21 debut and played the full game. I seen bits of the game and commentators Ben Andrews and Jason Cundy mentioned in commentary Tidy play by Joe and quick feet quite a lot. He had a good game but couldn’t help England avoid defeat as Ben Mee conceded a late pen and got sent off. Man United Macheda put away the pen to give Italy a one nil win.
Joe got a huge future if he keeps progressing. Quick Feet to take people out the game, looks composed on the ball. Set up an assist for Boyd at Scunthorpe with a good run and link up play with Arca and McDonald. Got a lot still to learn defensively at times that will come with more games and listening to coaches to improve on his mistakes. Will help him that his England U21 Manager Stuart Pearce played at Left back. First of many U21caps I think.
Let’s hope for more mazy runs and assists from Joe in 2nd half of the season and even a goal would be nice. If it’s anything like the run and step overs to beat players at leeds then certainty be up there for goal of the season.
Finally good news that the club signed a lot of the academy players on longer term deals. Let’s hope we have learned from letting our academy contracts run out and get littler fees and keep our local talent.
Printed in FMTTM Fanzine V Swansea Saturday 12 February 2011