Could Sheffield Wednesday starlet Alex Hunt benefit from a January loan move?
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Diminutive midfielder Alex Hunt, then 19, followed up a bright substitute appearance at QPR with a confident half-hour cameo against reigning champions of England Manchester City, up against the likes of David Silva.
The youngster moved the ball around nicely and seemed to relish the experience of playing in front of a the BBC cameras, prompting then-Wednesday boss Garry Monk to proclaim he had a bright future.
Things have perhaps not gone exactly as Hunt would have wanted since, with his involvement having been limited to an hour in the Championship, while a knee injury stunted what should have been a platform in the club’s early-season run in the Carabao Cup. He has played only one full
Early on in the season, Monk himself commented that a loan move away for some of the club’s younger players was something he had considered, before his predecessor Tony Pulis said similar.
But with squad depth limited at the club, moving players on for development may well prove be a luxury Wednesday can afford.
Of all the talented youngsters at the club, only Liam Shaw’s recent emergence has him in the bracket of first team contender, with Fisayo Dele-Bashiru having found opportunities limited alongside Hunt, particularly since Monk’s departure.
Andy Holdsworth, Owls stand-in coach for their trip to Exeter, brought Hunt off after 64 minutes and described the task ahead for the youngster in forcing his way back into first team contention.
“Alex has a lot of established Championship players in that midfield and so he has to rise above that,” he said. “That's the challenge. He has got to develop himself and get better and better.
“But make no mistake, Alex is a very good footballer.”
Holdsworth knows Hunt better than most having coached him in the club’s youth ranks. On whether a loan is a possibility for the midfield man, he said: “It's not my decision to make of course, but potentially. It's not just Alex.
“It's probably a lot of the young ones as well.
“It's something we need to manage this month and we'll look at it and see what we can and can't do.”