Peterborough United’s Britt Assombalonga has been awarded The Football League’s Young Player of the Month Award for August. The award covers players that play in all three divisions of the Sky Bet Football League.
Having joined Peterborough in a club record deal from Watford in the summer, Assombalonga has hit the ground running at London Road. The 20-year old forward scored 5 goals in 7 games in the opening month of the season, including the winner on his Posh debut at home to Swindon Town.
With such a major contribution, Assombalonga has been one of the standout performers of Peterborough’s flying start to the season, and already looks like being a key figure as the club push for a return to the Sky Bet Championship.
Assombalonga, who was told about his achievement before scoring two goals in the 3-0 win at Bristol City, said: “To get a trophy like this makes you feel really good. To hear something good before the game automatically makes you feel good. I took that into the game and it gave me the will to do even better.
“It’s not just me scoring goals, it’s Tyrone Barnett and Lee Tomlin too. If we keep going the way we’re going we will be in the Championship next season. The manager has made me feel like I’m welcome. The whole staff have been great.”
Peterborough United manager Darren Ferguson added, ‘Britt has settled very quickly. I think when you score on the opening day it does give you that extra belief, but to be honest, his performances have been excellent since he walked in the door. He has formed a good partnership with Tyrone Barnett and he works extremely hard on the training pitch. He always wants to learn from the coaches and he picks things up quickly.’
Each season, Football League clubs invest more than £40m on identifying, training and educating the next generation of football talent. Around a third of this money (£12.6m) is provided by the Football Association and Premier League.
There are 8,700 young players registered with League clubs making Football League Youth Development the largest centrally co-ordinated young player programme in world football. In the 2013/14 season to date, 72 players aged 21 or under have made their professional debuts for Football League clubs.
David Wetherall, Head of Youth Development at The Football League, said, “Britt has had a fantastic start to his Peterborough United career. He has clearly benefitted from the first team experience he gained on loan at Southend United last season and looks to have both the skills and the right attitude to be a success. Peterborough are already benefitting from that and I look forward to seeing how he progresses”.
Each month the accolade will be awarded by The Football League to the young player who has made the most significant contribution and impact in first team football. To be eligible the player must be either under 21 years of age or be playing in the season during which he turns 21. Currently a third of all players registered with Football League clubs are eligible to be considered for this award.
For more information on the award and each month’s winner visit www.football-league.co.uk