March 9 2014 Latest news:
By Stuart Watson
Monday, July 23, 2012
IPSWICH Town have once again utilised their strong links with Tottenham Hotspur to bring in teenage midfielder Massimo Luongo, pictured, on a season-long loan deal.
The 19-year-old Australian is expected to join up with Paul Jewell’s squad for training today, having played in a friendly for Spurs’ development squad against Italian side Calsio Como on Saturday.
He is likely to make his debut in either tomorrow night’s friendly at Braintree Town or the following night at Cambridge United, with manager Paul jewell having said he will spilt his squad for the two games.
Supporters are unlikely to know much about the 5ft 9in youngster who is described as a creative central midfielder.
And while temporary acquisitions are not always welcomed by fans in the same way as permanent ones – the deal could potentially end in January – fans will have to trust the judgement of the Blues coaching staff.
Jewell speaks regularly with Spurs coach Tim Sherwood and has seen the club’s reserve and youth team sides face the north London club on numerous occasions. In addition, returning academy director Bryan Klug spent the last two years working within the youth set-up at the Premier League club. And, of course, Town have had Giovanni Dos Santos, Andros Townsend and Jake Livermore on loan from Tottenham in recent years.
Sydney-born Luongo started out his career playing for APIA Leichhardt Tigers in his homeland before joining Spurs in January last year after impressing on trial.
He scored three goals in nine appearances for Tottenham’s Under-18 team last season and made one appearance for the first team under Harry Redknapp, coming on as a substitute in a League Cup game against Stoke and missing the crucial spot-kick in the penalty shoot-out.
Still eligible to represent Italy or Indonesia through his father and mother’s respective birth places, he has represented the Australian Under-20 team on two occasions and has been called up for training camps in Europe with the full senior national team.
With Jewell also trying to tie up a deal for 19-year-old box-to-box midfielder Cheick Kourouma, Town will be well stocked with options in the middle next season. Luke Hyam, Andy Drury, Ryan Stevenson, Jimmy Bullard and Lee Martin are already at the club, with the latter now entering the final year of his contract.
– What do you think? Are you excited about the prospect of a young Premier League player coming to the club, or worried about a loanee blocking the progress of the club’s own players? Post your comments below.