Ryan Sessegnon & The Future Of England
Ryan Sessegnon & The Future Of England
This year marks the 10th anniversary since Ryan Sessegnon joined Fulham’s under-9 team, and after signing a new contract with the club until 2020, it would seem that he’s there to stay. Up until 18 months ago, the name “Sessegnon” was only known by a handful of Fulham supporters- but that’s all changed.
Fast forward to the present day and young Ryan has the footballing world at his feet after picking up an incredible 5 individual trophies back in April, including Championship Player of the Year- beating Rúben Neves and his team-mate Tom Cairney in the process.
After scoring over a dozen goals in the Championship and picking up such prestigious awards, attention was bound to be brought to the youngster, who’s yet to turn 18. The rumour mill is out in full force with clubs like Manchester United, Tottenham, Liverpool and PSG all looking to acquire his services.
It’s clear that Ryan Sessegnon has his head in the right place and knows what he has to do in order to become the best footballer he can be- by sticking with his current club in the hopes of gaining promotion to the Premier League and adding even more experience to his game- a game that already includes tremendous amounts of speed, skill, strength and incredible movement on and off the ball.
But success at such a young age can sometimes prove fatal in an Englishman’s football career, killing it before it ever really takes off. Media hype and pressure is the main cause of their failure, glorifying players from the beginning, worshipping them like gods, only to beat them down when they don’t achieve what was expected of them.
Regardless of whether or not Fulham get promoted, staying at Craven Cottage would probably be the best option for the youngster for at least another year. By doing so he’d hone the traits he already has and also guarantee first-team football for another full season, rather than venture off to a much bigger club, potentially outside his home nation.
However, playing outside of England would probably be the best thing for his career, both for club & country, and if he has as much potential as everyone claims, a foreign team would be the best option for him. Why? The answer is fairly simply, and it boils down to experience, but not just any kind of experience- international experience. By playing elsewhere, Sessegnon would allow his perception of different types of football cultures to grow and afterwards bring that experience onto the pitch with him when playing for England.
Rio Ferdinand addressed back in November what he believed to be the reason behind England’s failure throughout the years, stating that club football created “rivalries” amongst those chosen for the national squad and that they didn’t want to know what each team’s players were saying at any given moment so as to not feel undermined.
Looking back at the three previous World Cup winners- Germany, Spain & Italy-, all of their starting XI in their respective finals had at least 8 players playing in their home countries. Spain’s first team consisted of 6 Barcelona players, 3 from Real Madrid and one from both Villarreal and Valencia- this all led to one of the best football teams in the sport’s history. While it’s true that the main line-up included players from 4 different clubs, it never stopped them from playing stunning football together, and ten of the eleven players all played within Spain up until then, with the exception of Xabi Alonso- but even the experience of one player can help a lot for the squad as a whole.
Jadon Sancho, another up-and-coming talent for England, did the right thing by moving to Borussia Dortmund and has played 10 games since signing for the German side back in August. Sessegnon would be wise to take note of this signing and hopefully be influenced to do the right thing. Sancho is sure to break into the first team football in Dortmund, with the ageing Marco Reus’ career beginning to enter its peak stage – as long as his injuries are kept at bay- so a similar move for the Fulham wonderkid would be the best option for his career.
The latest odds show that Sessegnon is currently at 10/1 to be included in Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad.