Cartilage Free Captain is again reviewing and ranking the top 15 youth prospects at Tottenham Hotspur to see which players have the best potential to follow players like Harry Kane, Ryan Mason, Andros Townsend, and Nabil Bentaleb into the Tottenham first team. The rules for inclusion are as follows:
- The player had to be 21 or under on January 1, 2015
- The player cannot have seen significant match time with Tottenham's first team
Next on our list is 18-year-old attacking midfielder Joshua Onomah. Of note, he finished tied with our No. 3 ranked player, but Onomah loses our arbitrarily decided tiebreaker of variation. I was the only writer on the site to vote Onomah No. 1.
Who is he?
Onomah was making waves in our Under-18 team a few years ago, but he first came to national attention in last summer's Euro Under-17 Championships, where he was one of the star players in England's run to the title. He moved to the Under-21s and took up a starring role, even though he was one of the youngest players in the team.
While fans expected to see a bit more of him in the first team than they did last season, he got to make his senior debut in an FA Cup win over Burnley.
Onomah just signed a new contract with the club, despite the interest of Manchester City, who likely would have paid him a lot of money to make the move north. Even though Alex Pritchard and Dele Alli have joined up, we should still expect to see a few more first team chances for Onomah this season than we did last year.
What can he do?
He's got those Marcus Edwards skills, but with pace, power and goals to go along with them. Here's him clowning some fools in an Under-17 international.
And here he is scoring a goal against a much higher standard of opposition, the Netherlands.
There's nothing you'd look for in a second striker/attacking midfielder that Onomah doesn't have. Touch, creativity, flicks and tricks, pace, size, finishing. He lacks nothing.
Where can he go?
As far as he wants. Personally, I'm hoping Onomah gets some starts in Cup and Europa League games this season. We're clearing out lots of dead wood in the transfer window, and with a much leaner squad, there should be more opportunities for kids. Because Onomah plays a different role than our other top three prospects, he'll definitely get some chances.
Who knows if he'll put all of his skills together with the tactical intelligence and work ethic required to be a top Premier League footballer -- 18-year-olds are always a bit of a crap shoot -- but he has more ability than just about any other English prospect. We've now reached the portion of these rankings where the remaining players are limited only by their personality, mental capabilities, coaching and injury luck. Onomah and the three players ranked above him have all the tools to be world class. Let's hope he gets there.