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Academy prospect Sam has Field day with West Brom first team

Sport | Published:

West Brom academy prospect Sam Field was disappointed he didn't get a standing ovation from the first-team after nailing his initiation song at the weekend.

The 17-year-old midfielder travelled up to Manchester with Tony Pulis's squad alongside fellow youngsters Jonathan Leko and Tyler Roberts.

Because it was the first time he'd been involved, Baggies fan Field was forced to sing in front of the whole first team.

The teenager picked Estelle's 2008 hit, American Boy, and in particular the rap in the song made popular by James Corden on hit TV sitcom Gavin & Stacey. He was surprisingly pleased by his effort.

Field said: "I managed to get through about 30 seconds of it which was longer than I expected to manage but I thought I did pretty well.

"I got a round of applause but I was a little disappointed that I didn't get the standing ovation I was hoping for!"

Although the 17-year-old didn't make it into the squad for Saturday's 2-1 defeat at the Etihad Stadium, he was grateful to be handed valuable match-day experience.

Field trained with the first-team in Manchester on Friday and was told by Baggies head coach Tony Pulis that there might be an opportunity for a Premier League debut towards the end of the season.

The teenager said: "It was a fantastic experience to be involved with the first-team. As an Albion fan, I was extremely proud, too.

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"It was really good to see what it is like being around the first team on a match day, how they operate, how they prepare, pre-game routines and stuff like that.

"It was also great to get to know the players a bit better off the pitch and see what they are like on a personal level and not just on the pitch.

"Tony Pulis gets the players going really well and I was really impressed by the way he gets the team ready."

A deep-lying midfielder, Field has drawn comparisons at the club to George Thorne, a former academy star currently playing Championship football at Derby County.

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Pulis reckons the Baggies system has more talent in it than any other he's seen in nearly 25 years of management and he's rewarded Jonathan Leko with two substitute appearances in the last two games.

He wants the club's talented youngsters to experience more first-team football, whether it's at Albion or out on loan.

Considering the academy has produced Saido Berahino in recent years, there's a feeling among the young players that chances to play in the first-team will arise if they are earned.

Leko's recent inclusion is acting as further proof that hard work will be rewarded.

Field said: "Tony Pulis told me and Tyler in the changing room that we wouldn't be involved in the squad.

"But he then pulled us to one side and told us how he really likes us and that if we keep working hard and if we keep our heads down there might be chance for us at the end of the season, or early next season.

"I was disappointed not to be involved, but it was still great to be in the changing room before the game and feel that match vibe.

"I was also really happy for Jonathan Leko, obviously he came on again and did really well.

"It's a shame we lost the game because I thought we did enough to get a point on the day."

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