21 Defender Hull City Scotland
One of a promising crop of Scottish bright young things, Andrew Robertson has been making good progress for two years. Since moving from Dundee United last year he has established himself in Hull’s first team, cemented his place in the Scottish side and looked comfortable in the Premier League. Hull’s subsequent relegation has dropped him into the Championship, and a change of style has seen him having to adapt his game, but there’s still no element of risk here. Andrew Robertson is going to be back in the Premier League before too long and he’ll probably stay there for the greater portion of his career.
2015 has been…
…good for Robertson, not quite so good for his club.
One of the caveats we have when preparing this list is priority has to go to players playing at the top level of whichever domestic league system they find themselves in. We could put in an Arsenal reserve, an artisan midfielder from Serie B or a 12-year old with an incredible YouTube reel, but how on earth can you discredit a youngster playing in the highest league available for any of those options? So it’s a shame that Andrew Robertson now finds himself in the Championship, because he’s good enough to have stayed in the Premier League.
He nearly did if you believe everything you read in the red tops, Arsenal and Chelsea both registering an interest in the summer only to be rebuffed by a quoted £30m transfer fee. Let’s be clear, he’s not worth £30m, but he is being watched closely and his talent is both clear and known. If Hull aren’t promoted this year we have a feeling they may have to do without Robertson’s services next season.
His strengths are currently weighted towards going forward, he’s not suspect defensively but it’s clear he’s an attacking full-back and not something more passive. The Championship has curbed his ambitions somewhat and he’s even found himself targeted by some clubs and kept busy rather than having the freedom to dash up field. He’s adjusting but it takes a little time and he’s certainly not regressing. He’s also scored his first goal for club and country so an important year for his development overall. Good, solid stuff.
We’ve already said if Hull aren’t promoted then he may well move to a higher level but we hope that’s his last transfer for a while. At just 21 he’s on his third club, in 12 months’ time there’s a chance he could be on his fourth. He is developing well and has settled into each move, but we like young players to stay and learn their trade somewhere. If that’s Hull, great, if not then his next club needs to be a place he can stay for 3 to 4 seasons and grow.
There is no obvious weakness in his game but he needs to find new ways to play. He clearly gets frustrated when pushed to the back foot for 90 minutes, but he needs to learn to embrace that. He also needs to find ways to overcome systems that are designed to keep him in his own half - you only need to look at Luke Shaw for someone who has become an escapologist and is now capable of setting a tempo for his side going forward.
So a good year with circumstances pulling him back a touch, but we’ve still got high hopes. The big clubs are watching, time to put in some hard work on the training ground.
C+ Good progress, good player, good platform to learn
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