It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Yes, you guessed it right: it is the transfer season.
January might still be a Christmas away but who cares? Transfer rumours have already taken centre stage in the footballing world and pretty soon, we’ll have cash flying around as clubs ruthlessly pursue their targets.
There are a number of extremely talented players expected to be on the move next month; however, few are being kept tabs on with such excitement as Hull City’s Jarrod Bowen is.
With 12 goals and three assists in 19 appearances in the Sky Bet Championship so far, he is, without a shadow of doubt, a hot property right now, and it’s not long before England’s big boys are all over him.
Leicester City have been linked with him beforebut it’s all very silent at the King Power Stadium at the moment.
Amid calls from the fans for Brendan Rodgers to snap him up, we spoke to Jonty Colman, who’s a Digital Football Writer for Hull Live and the Hull Daily Mail, to find out what the noise really is all about.
Q. Arguably the best player in the Sky Bet Championship at the moment, Jarrod Bowen is being widely touted as the next big English talent set to light up the Premier League – but are you buying into the hype?
“He has to be among the Championship’s best players. I recently featured on a podcast and was asked where he would rank and I said he was third, something I still stand by.
“His return of goals for a winger is frightening at this level, especially given how he has only really had just over two seasons of regular senior football.”
Q. You must have seen quite a bit of Bowen. Can you expatiate on the sort of player he is in terms of his playing style, his strengths and weaknesses – if any, of course?
“He is a winger with a keen eye for goal and his positioning, desire and consistency are incredibly admirable.
“He has shown versatility in recent months and can also operate in a central role. Less effective but still more than capable. If he played up front, I’d argue his strength makes it difficult to hold up play, but his weaknesses in the Championship are minimal and any team in this league would be in awe of a player of his quality.”
Q. One day you’re the cock of the walk, the next a feather duster: this is why character is everything for any young player. We know Bowen the footballer, but how’s he character-wise?
“Very humble, very focused. He is very aware of the hype around him, but he keeps his feet firmly on the ground. Having not moved in the summer, he could have easily sulked or not returned to his great form, but that is far from it.
“As it stands, he is on for his best ever season. Players and City head coach Grant McCann often praise his character and it is easy to see why.”
Q. He has been linked with Leicester City before and it’s only a matter of time before we see him linked again. The fans are already in awe and want him at the club. Do you feel he adds to what Brendan Rodgers currently has at his disposal?
“I definitely believe he is capable of playing in the Premier League, but Leicester are so high-flying at the moment, it would be hard to guarantee regular minutes.
“If recent games are to go by, a move to Leicester would put him in direct competition with Ayoze Perez, who Leicester spent a lot of money on and has a lot of experience at this level.
“He would definitely add to Leicester’s squad, but he strikes me as someone who wants to play football and would only move with guarantees of regular minutes.”
Q. Were you to name one Leicester player who Bowen is very similar to, who would that be?
“I would struggle, if I am honest. The nearest would be a former player in Riyad Mahrez.
“Both had good goal records from the right wing and favour cutting in on the left, both have great technique about their game.”
Q. Finally, how much would realistically be enough to tempt Hull City into selling him?
“City owner Assem Allam publicly stated that he would not sell Bowen for £20 million, so it would have to be north of that, which would make him one of the division’s most expensive ever sales.”