‘Oxford will just have to handle Rio tag’


oxfJoey O’Brien has warned Reece Oxford he is simply going to have to learn how to cope with the “new Rio Ferdinand” comparisons he’s bound to face as he makes his way in the game.

It’s clear that the youngest Hammer to ever wear a first team shirt is set for more game time this season but he can expect to be dogged by the Ferdinand tag for a some time to come.

After O’Brien shared a game with him against Ferdinand, the Irishman decared: “It’s something he will have to deal with and that isn’t easy for a 16-year-old kid

“The Premier League is probably the toughest league in the world and it’s even tougher than 10 years or so ago when those players came through, so it will be harder for him to come through.

O’Brien agreed  there is a long way between exciting prospect and first-team regular saying: “It is fantastic for him and the academy. He was on the bench last year and nothing really phases him.

“That’s the most important thing, especially with the hype around the game. Sometimes you can get carried away with the whole thing but he just comes in and it doesn’t bother him.

“But he has a lot to do. I have seen many a player play with expectations so high and never quite fulfil it. So many things have to fall your way.

“Physically he looks great but there is so much luck involved in making it to the top.”

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • bubs says:

    What a major problem,if life was that hard he could have had a tag like being like Magia
    How would that do for your moral.
    He won’t have a problem as long as we don’t sell him to Leeds just so they can double there money selling him on

  • GW says:

    The kid is 16 years old with undoubted talent and poise on the ball, yes he will be compared to Rio and that’s no bad thing but instead of comparing him to all these players let him be Reece Oxford , he’s lucky he’s got a manager who understands how to be a centre half at the top level, new Rio maybe but just Reece at the moment will do.

  • Simply The Best says:

    It will do him no harm,it should inspire him to become better.Sink or swim,he has the talent,what he does with it is down to him now in the coming season 😉

  • fobyac says:

    He has fantastic potential….but that’s it.
    He’s still a kid, a bloody good one, but still so young.
    The problem with playing CB is that youngsters can get bullied by wily old strikers, just look at how Lukaku messed about with Burke last season, I can remember the early days of Alvin Martin and Rio, the same happened with them to a degree.
    I hope he is left alone enough to develop his body and his game with the odd appearance in the first team.

  • Billy Hammer says:

    He will be just fine if he is allowed to develop & learn his trade without being pushed too hard.His game time will come when it is appropriate im sure.No need to push or rush him 😉

  • kevin says:

    He can be Better than Rio Ferdinand ; it ain’t difficult .

  • kevin says:

    Good God ; Tomkins and Reid are Better .

  • Baz Brushe says:

    Hahaha,i love your new found enthusiasm Kev,but Reid & Tonks have never & will never be better than Rio,lol,show me Tomkins England caps 😀

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