Patrick Vieira inspires Walsall's Jordy Hiwula

Walsall | Sport | Published:

Few young players are fortunate enough to have a World Cup winner as their coach and Walsall loanee Jordy Hiwula knows it.

The biggest moment of Patrick Vieira's career occurred when the Saddlers' newest arrival was just three years old.

Despite that, but the vast career achievements of his Manchester City mentor are not lost on the young striker.

The 20-year-old said: "He's won the World Cup, he's won the Premier League, he's won trophies everywhere.

"He is a big source of encouragement for all the players at Manchester City, even the first-team lads. They still look up to him and he's a good coach too."

Vieira is likely to be an interested onlooker as Hiwula spends at least the next month with the Saddlers, in a coaching system where numerous players have flourished in recent years.

And that was a fact not lost on the Manchester-born frontman when Dean Smith's side came to play a behind-closed-doors friendly at City's £200million training complex a fortnight ago.

For him, this is the right move at the right time. He said: "I felt I did very well in that game and I felt it was a chance to impress because Walsall were there.

"I thought it would be a good loan if they come in for me and I am glad I'm here now. At the age I'm at now, I feel I need first-team football because I have been involved in the 21s for so long.


Pedigree - Walsall's loan ranger Jordy Hiwula is still highly thought of at Manchester City.

"In League One, you are playing with professional players who have played in the game for many years, whereas in the under-21s you are playing against those who are your own age."

Hiwula is highly-rated at City but with the club spending hundreds of millions each year strengthening their first-team squad, he knows chances are always likely to be limited.

The opportunity to impress with the Saddlers is one he's desperate to make the most of and the player's history suggests he is not one to give up on his goals without a fight.


Back in 2012, Hiwula spent a year out after suffering a cruciate ligament injury but recovered to score 20 goals for the under-21s last season.

He said: "I was off for a year but I feel I have grown since I came back. I was 18 when the injury happened and I definitely learned a lot about myself.

"There were other things I could do as well like watching clips back from the previous season and seeing what I could improve on.

"I was doing well till then but I have done pretty well since I have come back as well."

Hiwula insists he is more than ready should he be called on to make his debut at Doncaster tomorrow.

It will not be his first taste of life in League One. Earlier this season Hiwula made nine appearances for Yeovil, scoring one goal, in a loan move which was ended prematurely.

The striker claims he was unlucky, has learned from it and is ready to show the Saddlers what he's really made of.

He said: "I felt I played very well there and was unfortunate in a lot of games. I feel like I have grown from it and I can get better by coming here."

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