Crystal Palace’s teenage star Jesurun Rak-Sakyi could force his way into Patrick Vieira’s lineup against Spurs this weekend following his debut goal for England U20s on Monday.
The 18-year-old winger came off the bench in the 77th minute at St George’s Park and scored his country’s final goal in a 6-1 friendly rout against Romania, handing new England U20 boss Keith Downing the perfect start to his time in charge.
For Rak-Sakyi, who before Monday had never represented England at any age level, the timing of his goal ahead of a big Premier League match against Spurs this Saturday could be perfect as Palace currently face a personnel dilemma on the right wing.
The Eagles have regularly lined up with Jordan Ayew in that position so far this season, though with the Ghanian coming off with a reported hamstring injury while on international duty last week there could be a spot that needs to be filled.
Summer signing from Reading Michael Olise can play on the right as well as his preferred role in attacking midfield, though having only just returned to training following a back injury the Palace coaching staff might be hesitant about throwing him into the starting XI on his debut for the club.
That leaves Rak-Sakyi, who was given his Premier League debut by Vieira off the bench against Chelsea in Palace’s first game of the season at Stamford Bridge.
Last year the winger exploded onto the scene at Palace as he scored eight goals and set up eight more in 16 games for the U18s, soon being fast-tracked into the U23s before making his Premier League bow last month.
The teenager has yet to be truly tested in senior football, though could this be the moment that he breaks into the first-team picture or is it still too early?
If Vieira thinks the latter then maybe there will be a formation change for the Spurs match. Palace have played in a 4-3-3 during all of their games so far this season, but with the deadline day addition of Odsonne Edouard they now can be more flexible and could even play the Frenchman alongside Christian Benteke.
Whichever way Vieira decides to play on Saturday though one thing is for certain – Rak-Sakyi is a shining talent for the club.
Source by Football London