Having watched Harry Maguire come through with the Blades, Morgan sets a challenge for Spireite Laurence
Having already had a hand in the development of one footballer from the Maguire family, Chris Morgan has set a challenge for another '“ Chesterfield's Laurence.
The 19-year-old, who scored his first professional goal last week at Rochdale before picking up an injury at Peterborough on Saturday, is one of three defenders in the family.
Joe, 25, is currently plying his trade with National League North side Boston United, while Harry, 23, is with Premier League Hull City.
It was Harry who came through as a teenager at Sheffield United during Morgan’s time at Bramall Lane, and he’s keen to see Laurence progress in similar fashion.
“I want to challenge Laurence to keep working hard, keep putting performances in when he plays for the reserves and when he gets his chances, like in the Checkatrade, and try to get himself in our first team,” said Town’s assistant boss.
“Laurence is well capable of doing that.
“At this moment in time in front of him there’s Sam, Evo and Tom. It’s not going to be easy for him but he knows that.
“I worked with his brother Harry at Sheffield United, he came through the same age and had that desire to go and better himself. He was at a club like Sheffield United wanting to get a move and move on.
“That’s got to be the challenge for Laurence, get into our first team, do well and see where the world takes him.”
At Chesterfield currently Danny Wilson has at his disposal the physicality of Ian Evatt, the no nonsense kick-it-and-head-it approach of Tom Anderson and the ball playing Sam Hird.
Morgan, a man who forged a fine career in the centre of both Barnsley and Sheffield United’s respective defences, believes Maguire has a bit of everything.
“I think he’s got a good mix,” said Morgan.
“He’s got a fantastic left foot, he’s got a good range of passing. You saw the other night he got it out of his feet and knocked a really good diagonal ball for Ched.”
But it’s his canny knack of getting his head to the ball before anyone else, and not just in and around his own penalty box, that could stand him in good stead for the future.
The teenager has an impressive goalscoring pedigree in youth and second string football.
Morgan said: “Laurence has a really good habit of getting his head on the ball in both boxes.
“For a centre-half it’s a real good habit to have. He has a good scoring record in the reserves and could have had two goals at Rochdale.
“Sometimes in football everyone gets too bogged down with what happens between both penalty boxes, but for us as a team and certainly Laurence as a defender, he’ll be judged by what work he does in the penalty area.”