It’s now time to take a look at how some of our young Academy starlets have fared at their loan clubs in the past seven days, as Josh Cullen and Reece Burke enjoyed more Sky Bet Championship action and Reece Oxford came close to getting his first taste of the Bundesliga.
Reece Burke and Josh Cullen (Bolton Wanderers)
Bright young Hammers prospects Reece Burke and Josh Cullen are continuing to impress fans at the Macron Stadium, as they settle into life at Bolton Wanderers.
The pair have been shining lights in a dark start to their first season back in the Championship, as Phil Parkinson’s men are yet to register a league win. However, they did put in a resilient display at St. Andrews’ for a 0-0 draw against Harry Redknapp’s Birmingham last Wednesday in the league. Both Burke and Cullen started that game and played the full 90 minutes, but were left frustrated in a goalless encounter in the Midlands.
Bolton fans have been giving rave reviews about the youngsters, but back when they originally signed for the Greater Manchester club many Hammers fans were left angered. The fans’ anger was directed at the fact that Josh Cullen in particular, who is an Irish youth International, should be enjoying his first season as a regular first-team member at The London Stadium.
Nevertheless, the duo are still out on loan as they enter their twenties and went up against a stern Derby County side at the Macron Stadium on Saturday afternoon. However, it would be a tougher afternoon for Phil Parkinson’s men at home, as they were beaten 1-2 by the Rams. A brace from veteran forward David Nugent aided Derby to their victory, with a Gary Madine consolation coming too late for the hosts.
Next up for the Trotters and our young pair is a home Carabao Cup tie with Sheffield Wednesday, before a Sky Live Friday night trip to The KCOM Stadium to face last season’s 18th placed Premier League side Hull City.
Reece Oxford (Borussia Mönchengladbach)
England youth International Reece Oxford moved a step closer to making his loan debut for Bundesliga side Borussia Mönchengladbach yesterday afternoon, as he was named in the squad to face 1. FC Köln.
The 18-year-old spent last season at Jaap Stam’s Reading, after a season or two in and around the first-team structure. Oxford has also been dubbed as “The Future Captain of England” and linked to Three Lions Legend and fellow West Ham United Academy graduate Rio Ferdinand.
The centre-back has impressed in his first few weeks with the German giants, as he scored the equalizer against Malaga in a pre-season friendly, but was left out of Dieter Hecking’s squad to face R-W Essen in The DFB Pokal Cup last week. However, the tall defender’s inclusion in the squad as an unused substitute in the domestic season opener will surely mean that he has taken a step closer to his bow in continental Europe.