Ben Johnson delivered a brutally honest verdict on the debut of 16-year-old Ollie Scarles in West Ham United’s European rout and it is refreshing to hear.
Scarles became one of the youngest players in West Ham history as he took to the field at left wing back in the 3-0 Europa Conference League win over FCSB.
With West Ham having secured their place in the last 16 by winning the group last week, the game was a dead rubber.
And that afforded David Moyes the luxury of being able to give several young players the opportunity to taste first team action.
Scarles started for West Ham alongside fellow academy graduates Divin Mubama, Conor Coventry and Ben Johnson.
And it was the baby-faced left wingback who stole the show for the Hammers.
Scarles was brilliant, showing amazing energy, positional sense, pace and quality on his left foot with deliveries into the box that put Aaron Cresswell to shame.
West Ham’s latest star from the production line could have ended the game with a couple of assists and a goal or two himself after a remarkable debut.
Moyes and Pablo Fornals praised him after the game as West Ham supporters raved about the youngster.
And Ben Johnson delivered a brutally honest verdict on Scarles’ debut in the West Ham rout and it is refreshing to hear.
Johnson was one of a couple of a number of West Ham players who is really struggling this season to meet their usual standards.
Besides a lovely ball over the top for the opening goal, Johnson was poor on the night overall.
And he admitted as much when praising Scarles in an interview on BT Sport.
“Yea of course (I remember my debut), he was much better than me on my debut,” Johnson told BT Sport.
“And much better than me tonight!
“But yea he is a fantastic guy and only – how long have we known each other – a couple of weeks and he has taken the game by the scruff of the neck and in training he’s extremely good and yea a top boy so he’s got a great future…
“He done fantastic tonight.”