New summer arrival at Tottenham will help Ange Postecoglou realise his long-term Spurs aim

Ange Postecoglou set a very public challenge to Tottenham Hotspur's academy to improve the consistent quality of its graduates and a new arrival this summer in the shape of Southampton's Jack Chapman is expected to help that long-term aim.

Spurs have enjoyed a fruitful season within their youth set-up with 19-year-old Jamie Donley and 16-year-old Mikey Moore making their Premier League debuts under Postecoglou along with a number of academy youngsters appearing on the bench throughout the season, including 18-year-old midfielder Tyrese Hall in the penultimate game of the season against Manchester City. understands that Postecoglou has taken a real liking to the talented Moore and Hall in particular, who both could get minutes next season with more games in the schedule for Tottenham with the return of Europa League football. Donley has also caught the eye with a fine season and could get a loan move next season to increase his development.

In the second half of the season, Hall and Donley impressed as Wayne Burnett's U21s side finished top of the 26-club Premier League 2 table and then won the ensuing play-offs to decide the ultimate champion while Stuart Lewis' U18s continued their progress after lifting the U18 and U17 Premier League Cups last year.

However, Postecoglou, who has been involved in international youth football in Australia in the past as well as setting up academies himself in Melbourne, made it clear to this season that he wanted far more quality coming into the first team from the youth section. With the tightening of financial fair play rules, club academies are going to be under even more pressure to produce top young talents consistently.

"It’s about opportunity. I’m not sure about your reference to the academy [having lots of quality coming through], I think we've got a lot of work to do in our academy and Simon Davies is certainly one that is putting a lot of emphasis and priority there. I don't think we have the production line other top clubs have, certainly not," said the Spurs boss in February this year. "Even currently that’s why we’re investing in some younger players, even for the first team. For us as a football club that's definitely the way forward.

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"My brief at the moment is still very much around the first team and building a first team and you can do that while giving opportunities to young players. If anything I think for sustainable success it's the best way to go because the team grows together when it's guys of similar ages as long as you've got good experience around them.

"That's what we're doing at first team level. We've still got a lot of work to do at academy level. We've got a great man there in Simon who has worked at some of best academies going and he knows what’s needed. We've got some good coaches in there now. This year has been better but in terms of a production line of young players I think we’re still well behind other clubs."

Academy director Simon Davies has been a popular addition within the club since arriving in 2022, initially as head of coaching methodology before becoming academy director last year after succeeding the long-serving Dean Rastrick. Many have credited Davies with helping Spurs forge their best crop of 16 to 19-year-olds in a long time but the focus is also on improving what is coming into the club in the age groups below.

Davies has been attempting to overhaul the club's youth set-up since taking on the role last summer and that continued evolution will see Chapman arrive later this summer in a similar role to the head of academy recruitment position he has held at Southampton for the past 11 months. Before that, the 34-year-old had spent six-and-a-half years within academy recruitment at Swansea, the final four years as that section's head.

Chapman will take over the role at Tottenham from Paul Lowe, who left in April after seven years at the north London club, following similar roles at Liverpool, Norwich, Crystal Palace and Leicester.

Spurs moved quickly to bring in highly-rated Saints man Chapman after only a season on the south coast and he will work closely with Davies and Tottenham's technical director Johan Lange going forward to improve the quality of recruits coming into the academy between the nine to 16-year age group.

Andy Scoulding was originally brought in from Rangers in a head of football strategy role in 2022 but his title is now heads of loans and pathways as he looks after those youngsters heading out of the club and is also involved in the recruitment of emerging talent in the 16-21 age group. understands a big job awaits Chapman with a dissatisfaction among some over the volume of quality being brought into the academy's younger age groups below 16 over recent years. That is something that Davies has been looking to change to ensure a more steady conveyor belt into the first team for the long term, which is what Postecoglou spoke about back in February and other recent Tottenham managers have also touched upon.

Davies and Postecoglou meet every two weeks, around regular informal conversations about the current state of the academy and the former Manchester City academy man is one who has caught the Australian's eye with his work within the club and vision for the future.

"It has to be a close relationship but my job as well is I've got to make sure the players are good enough and they are around it right now," Davies said in an interview earlier this year on the club's podcast. "It is tough and the reality is our young players have got to be better than what's in the first team. It's the same around the country. There's no God-given right to get in our first team, it's a tough point to achieve in your career but the manager I know for sure will give opportunities as and when the time is right.

"You talk about the lads getting around the bench, part of that is because they have merited it and part of that is because of the injuries. There's always that factor there, but they've got to do it consistently. It doesn't just come because you've done it for a month, you have to do it consistently just for the next 20 odd years. That's the level.

"The talent will take them where it's going to take them but we have, in my opinion, got some top talent in the academy coming through. I'll always want more of it and I'll always be asking the question of just making it an even tougher environment for our young players coming through and get even more quality in there from outside because we're doing a good job in the rules and parameters in which we work within as every Premier League academy does. We are in the ballpark, we are in the right ballpark but I'll keep pushing."

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