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Loan needed for sacrificial lamb

Mipo Odubeko needs a loan move.

The 18-year-old came off the bench against Manchester United and did not have a kick against the experienced internationals at the heart of United’s backline: Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof.

They have 66 international caps between them for England and Sweden respectively but playing against defenders of that sort is a regular occurrence in the Premier League. 

Mipo just isn’t there when it comes to his development and that, at the end of the day, is why he was hooked in extra time, despite coming on as a sub himself.

He’s scored goals regularly for the youth teams, netting nine in seven for the U18s and six in four for the U23s.

But the step up from youth football to senior Premier League football is gigantic, as last night proved.

Mipo had 16 touches of the ball and he clearly wasn’t seen as the player needed to hold the ball up and bring others into play.

That’s not his fault, as he simply hasn’t had the rough and tumble of lower-league football to toughen him up to that standard.

He needs to drop down a league or two and play every week, against defenders who are willing to kick and scrounge for every ball and every 50-50.

Then, perhaps, he’ll be ready to lead the line.

Once the summer window comes, don’t be surprised if the Irons let Mipo go on loan; it’s the best thing for him.

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About Dave Langton

A journalist with 10 years' experience of working on National newspapers, now chief reporter covering the club that I've loved since I was a boy. Upton Park remains the greatest football stadium ever built.

11 comments on “Loan needed for sacrificial lamb

  1. I cannot understand how we have ended up in this position.To have one recognised striker albeit one who has been created is mind boggling.Yarmolenko was woeful last night and Mipo out of his depth as you say in this article.Surely we have to look at the free agent market because there is no way we will stay near the top 6 especially if Antonio continues to get injured.All this was predicted by many of us if a Haller replacement was not brought in.

  2. Everyone’s going mad after a youth player had a very average half a game against Manchester United, at Old Trafford – honestly! What were some fans expecting.

    He’s a kid and he’s not the first player to have had a bad game – Declan Rice was poor when he first broke in to the team? So was Ben Johnson. There are countless youth team players who have had bad debuts (Look at the Southampton kid who was sent off after 2 minutes!)

    Why are we writing him off and now shipping him off for a loan move? Let’s just integrate him slowly and see how he goes aka. a proper chance, not one cameo to decide the next 6/12 months. Also, going on loan and doing well doesn’t mean anything – Look at Rhian Brewster – went on loan, excellent in the championship, STILL can’t do it in the Prem and is taking time to integrate. Whose to say he wouldn’t have been better slowing getting minutes in the Prem, rather than a lesser league.

    We’ve got an opportunity at West Ham now – we HAVE to play our academy players. Lets embrace it. Not many teams can ‘afford’ to play them, but we can right now.

    I’m not saying he’s our saviour, or even that he’ll be good enough, all I’m saying is everyone needs to realise that integrating a player is a slow process. He’s going to have bad performances but he’ll have learnt a lot from last night. Lets keep him around the first team and give him minutes when we can. I hope he’ll gradually start to improve.

    • The call went out from all the usual armchair managers to play Mipo. How many of those had actually seen him play I wonder? Why won’t Moyes give him a chance they cried? Now we can see why. Not the lad’s fault. He’s still learning. Shades of those who claimed it was a crime to sell Diangana for £18m. Looks good business now to me.

    • Very sensible! Completely agree. Writing him off with articles like this is ridiculous. We need to sign forwards before releasing more!! Could do with the lad who scored in the cup! He’s gone to Bolton – what’s the point?

      Odubeko looked fine – he ran around and played some nice passes, he’s 18, it will take some time! Give him some more games – see if he sinks or swims. Clearly he knows where the net is and he’s recovering from a bad injury. We have nothing to lose.

    • Yes its very unfair on the poor Lad.We should not however have been in that position in the first place.Bring him on for 10 /15 minutes to get a feel for first team football but to throw him under the bus and then drag him off was poor management and it is simply down to the fact we do not have any alternative on the bench.Selling Haller was a ludicrous decision with no viable alternative to replace him.

    • Well said JB15.
      Hopefully he is good enough to make an impact in a few games during the season.
      Although it is strange how we don’t have any recognised strikers.
      I suppose we will just have to trust in Moyes’ master plan!

  3. Sorry, folks as a former footballer, captain and administrator, I really dont feel Mipo did that bad.
    His movement, body language and touches were much more encouraging than Yarmo.
    Let’s rather encourage than criticize the kid. This will affect him badly. We need him to grow and glow.
    Come on Mipi. God bless, son.

  4. I imagine the kid was extremely nervous and feeling the pressure to impress. He doesn’t deserve to be written off after one game and like it or lump it he is our only striker option right now so the last thing we want to do is send him out on loan.

    • I don’t think anyone is writing him off but after the last round people on here were saying we dont need to sign a striker, give him a chance 🤣. Clearly we did need one as without antonio (not an actual striker ) we are very short .

      Hope Lingaard can lead the line

  5. I agree with JB15. I don’t think loan moves really prepare a young player for the PL. if it did then more D2 players would be able to make the jump! In the position we are in, I would perhaps increase the amount of game time he gets and get his confidence up. It’s unfair to judge him on last night’s performance… young kid, away at MU, up against 2 international defenders and then asking him to feed off scraps!!! Sergio Aguero would have struggled to be fair!!

  6. Keep playing him, last 10 minutes whatever. He needs to play more than once, away at Old Trafford. He will come good but you can’t judge him on one game! I am wishing him all the best in his career for us and he played as well as Yarmo and perhaps Bowen, are they going out on loan? No so keep going. We are safe and should use that to get any capable youngsters in the team to have a good look at them.

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