Recognition for emerging front-man...
SADDLERS’ striker, George Bowerman has been awarded the npower Football League Young Player of the Month Award for September.
Coming through the Banks’s Stadium ranks, Bowerman, 20, signed a professional contract with the club in the summer of 2010. After a loan spell at Redditch United he broke into the first-team in the 2011/12 season and has continued his rise this season, scoring six goals during a series of impressive performances.
The month of September has arguably been Bowerman’s finest in a Walsall shirt with the young striker netting five goals, including a brace against Preston North End and another against title challengers Stevenage.
“Like the rest of the team, George had a good September,” said manager, Dean Smith. “He recognises that it’s a team game, but this is a fantastic award for him and excellent recognition for the club as a whole.
“It’s important that he keeps his feet on the ground and concentrates on what won him this award. Hopefully he will keep doing the right things and continue to get the rewards.”
Each season, Football League clubs invest more than £40m on identifying, training and educating the next generation of football talent. Around a third of this money (£12.6m) is provided by The Football Association and Premier League.
There are 8,700 young players registered with League clubs making Football League Youth Development the largest centrally co-ordinated young player programme in world football.
David Wetherall, Head of Youth Development at The Football League, said, “Since breaking into the first team last season George has shown what a talented footballer he is.
"He has a real taste for goals and his enthusiasm and skill is certainly paying off, I wish him all the best of luck for the rest of the season and beyond.”
Each month the accolade will be awarded by The Football League to the young player who has made the most significant contribution and impact in first team football. To be eligible the player must be either under 21 years of age or be playing in the season during which he turns 21.
During the 2011/12 season, 225 players aged 21 or under made their professional debuts in The Football League.