Freddie Woodman has now admitted that he is in a ‘bad situation’ at the club – with the England U-21 international goalkeeper forced to play in the reserves after having a loan move ‘blocked’ over the summer.
Just a few months ago the 21-year-old was given the opportunity to train with the England senior side by Gareth Southgate, however he is now playing U-23 football for our reserves – despite being more than good enough for first-team football.
He’s out of contract in 2020 and it was recently confirmed that scouts from both Celtic and Manchester United had been watching him, showing that there’ll be no shortage of takers if we don’t start managing his situation much better.
Here’s what he’s had to say about his situation when speaking to The Chronicle today, stating that he’s now making the best of a bad situation and looking ahead to the January window:
“January is around the corner and I have to be prepared for it when it comes.
“I’ve always said I enjoy playing football so whatever level it is, I am going to enjoy it.
“I don’t have to play for the Under-23s – I choose to play.
“I just want to get the best out of a bad situation.”
“I want to be playing – at the highest level I can.
“It’s not always the case, as other things get in the way of stuff – but I let other people deal with that.”
He’s clearly just getting on with it, but he’s not been handled well at all.
Why the club ‘blocked’ a loan move away over the summer when Dubravka, Darlow and Elliot all appear to be ahead of him in the pecking order is beyond me – especially when a player of his age and talent needs first-team football to continue developing.
He’s regularly selected for the England U-21’s – a set up that includes several players playing week in week out at Premier League level – so there’s only so long this can go on.
If we don’t sanction a loan move in January then his head could well be turned come next summer.