Coral’s Premier League Awards 2014/15: Homegrown Player of the Season
It’s awards season, and we at Coral are holding our own as the Premier League campaign approaches the run-in.
We’ve seen superb signings shine and homegrown heroes hailed this term, and there will be several categories, though players can only be nominated in a maximum of two to ensure everyone a fair crack.
Next up is our Homegrown Player of the Year award, which highlights the stand-out starlets aged 24 and under, who have emerged from English academies and shone this season.
Harry Kane (Tottenham)
Kane will undoubtedly be in contention for a slew of accolades this term, after his exciting exploits in a Tottenham shirt. The 21-year-old, alongside Raheem Sterling, is one of the best example of English talent to have graduated from a Premier League academy in some time.
The sharpshooter has struck 29 for Spurs this season across all competitions, and is currently Premier League joint-top scorer on 19. His impact for top four chasers Tottenham is more just goals, however, as Kane’s spirit and tenacity also saw him named captain for his boyhood club last time out at Burnley.
Spurs’ prize asset has put in some remarkably potent performances, earning international recognition for England along the way, and has made a seamless step up to each level, proving this is no purple patch.
Watch a selection of Kane’s cracking goals below:
Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)
Henderson is perhaps one of the league’s most improved players this campaign, and deserves recognition for providing Liverpool with leadership and drive, stepping into Steven Gerrard’s shoes as the skipper has been winding down his Anfield career.
His excellent midfield engine has been supplemented with the addition of end product to match his effort and exuberance this season, proving doubters of Henderson’s attacking ability wrong by bagging a career-high six goals and eight assists, helping drag Liverpool (6/1 for a top four finish) through as sticky patch.
View Henderson’s season highlights here:
Nathaniel Clyne (Southampton)
Consistent is the word that comes to mind when contemplating Clyne, who has made 29 appearances this term as the south coast club’s reliable right back, which is potentially the most complementary praise that can be dished out to a defender.
A key component in Southampton’s sturdy rearguard unit, a belligerent backline that has leaked the fewest number of goals in England’s top tier, Clyne’s excellent outings have seen him stake a credible claim for the vacant Three Lions right back berth.
Also capable of vicious punts from distance, should Clyne leave the Saints (14/1 for a top four finish) this summer, any suitors would surely benefit from his bursts down the right flank.
Take a look at Clyne’s stunning strike against Arsenal:
Raheem Sterling (Liverpool)
It’s testament to swashbuckling Sterling’s talent that, despite being far from his bamboozling best at times, the 20-year-old has still managed to dazzle defences in the midst of a muddled season for the Reds.
Luis Suarez’s Anfield exit, coupled with Daniel Sturridge’s injury woes and several summer striker signing flops, has meant Sterling has borne much weight and expectation on his shoulders.
The electric attacker has toiled up top alone and been played out of position as right wing back, but has continued to be a shining light for Liverpool, with the Golden Boy grabbing six goals and eight assists.
See some of Sterling’s best moments here:
Saido Berahino (West Bromwich Albion)
Burundi-born Berahino’s early season brilliance has been somewhat diminished by both off-field antics and poaching peer Kane’s extraordinary goal return, but his breakout campaign has been promising enough to make him one of our picks ahead of Danny Ings.
Before the Spurs striker Kane’s explosion, Berahino was the name on many pundits’ lips as an England contender, having bagged 12 in the league for the struggling Baggies.
The speedster may not have hit the headlines for on-field antics as much as his contemporaries, but has arguably the highest ceiling alongside Kane, of any young English striker.
A fine finisher, blessed with bags of skill and pace, Berahino has impressed with his graft and link-up play in those games where he has failed to find the net, working hard for a far from glamorous West Brom side.
Take a peek at Berhino’s top goals: