Tottenham Hotspur’s John Bostock is currently plying his trade at League One’s Swindon Town, a far cry from where he thought he’d be four years ago when he signed for Spurs, but can he possibly hit the heights his early career promised?
It seems like the 20-year-old will have to wait some time before he can break into the Tottenham team. The classy central midfielder is a superb prospect and would probably be a regular squad member at most Premiership clubs, but the wealth of talent at White Hart Lane means that he will have to continue his development elsewhere.
Bostock was much coveted when at Crystal Palace and chose Spurs over their London rivals and some foreign teams. He struggled to make an impression on the pitch and was restricted to a few Europa League substitute appearances, much to his frustration.
He was loaned out to Brentford, Hull and Sheffield Wednesday, impressing at all, before being sent out for a fourth time, on this occasion to Swindon Town where he now finds himself.
League One probably isn’t where he imagined himself and I don’t believe he deserves to be there either. Bostock is a magician with a football and I struggle to see how he can improve his skills in the third tier of English football.
The only saving grace could be the tutelage of Paulo Di Canio, but does the Italian’s legendary talent make up for the lack of quality football action? Even a spell in the reserves would mean he stays in the environment where he is in contact with top quality players on a daily basis.
Those top quality players, namely Sandro, Huddlestone, Parker, Dembele, Dempsey, Bale and Lennon, are the men keeping Bostock away from the top flight football that he craves but he must learn from them and attempt to emulate their success.
Bostock is still only 20 and, although many stars had made their mark by that age, he must remember that many hadn’t. Another year or two of patience may be needed and a run in a couple of cups would work wonders for his matchplay, confidence and visibility to Andre Villas-Boas.
The Englishman is one of the brightest talents in the Tottenham youth set-up and mustn’t be allowed to go to waste like Giovani and Routledge did. Bostock will be a star, but he may need some of Spurs’ current crop to burn out before he can shine.