Sheffield Wednesday: Carlos Carvalhal predicts big future for youngster George Hirst

Head coach Carlos Carvalhal has vowed to take care of highly-rated Owls striker George Hirst.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 2nd November 2016, 7:52 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 4:02 pm
George Hirst
George Hirst

The 17-year-old, who made his Wednesday debut as a substitute in their EFL Cup defeat at Cambridge United earlier this season, continues to shine at youth level.

Hirst, the son of Owls legend David, has been a regular scorer for the Under-18s during the 2016/17 campaign and has also netted three goals for the development squad.

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Following his impressive goal-scoring feats, some Wednesdayites have called for Hirst junior to be promoted to the first-team set-up but Carvalhal is refusing to rush the youngster’s development.

“George is a player that we are working with but he needs time like other players,” Carvalhal told The Star. “He is someone who will be knocking on the door in maybe one or two years.”

Despite reported interest from Chelsea, West Ham United, Leeds United, Southampton and Newcastle United, Hirst penned his maiden pro contract last March, committing his future to the Championship club until 2018. The lifelong Owls fan has since represented England at Under-18 and U19 level.

And, along with Connor O’Grady, Jack Lee, Sean Clare and Jack Stobbs, Hirst trained with the senior side as part of their five-day training camp in Portugal over the summer.

Carvalhal, who has previously handed debuts to goalkeepers Cameron Dawson and Joe Wildsmith, added: “I think in two or three years time Sheffield Wednesday will have more academy players in the first-team.”

Meanwhile, Owls pair Barry Bannan and Steven Fletcher have been selected in the Scotland squad for their World Cup qualifier with England next week. Bannan and Fletcher, who required stitches for a head wound suffered in the Owls’ defeat at Derby County last weekend, have been capped 24 and 30 times by their country respectively.

The Scots, sitting in fourth position in Group F after three matches, go to Wembley on Friday, November 11.

Left-back Daniel Pudil has been called up to the Czech Republic squad for their qualifier against Norway.