Sky Sports Scout, in association with Wyscout, reports on young defender Jack O'Connell
By Sky Sports Scout - Tweet me: @skysportscout
Last Updated: 21/05/14 12:21pm
Sky Sports Scout is our exciting feature where we scour the globe, in partnership with Wyscout, looking out for the best talent and bring you a report on what we find.
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NAME: Jack O'Connell
AGE: 20 (29th March, 1994)
BORN: Liverpool, England
CLUB: Blackburn (on loan at Rochdale)
FACTS:Did not join a professional club until he was 18
Sky Sports Scout Ratings:
0-10 - No hoper
11-20 - Should look elsewhere
21-30 - Might not make it
31-40 - Has work to do
41-50 - Keep an eye on him
51-60 - Great prospect
61-70 - On his way to the top
71-80 - Already World-class
The latest player to be spotlighted is England youth defender Jack O'Connell.
The scout reports...
Jack O'Connell has been hugely impressive for Rochdale this season. We take a close look at the young centre-half attracting a lot of interest with his performances.
Liverpool-born O'Connell is an unusual case, given that as a youngster he almost slipped through the net, and was not picked up by any club until he was 18.
O'Connell played local football on Merseyside before coming to the attention of a number of sides in the north west and, by the summer of 2011, he had a number of offers on the table before he opted to join Blackburn's academy.
A year after signing, he was handed his first professional deal and months later he was making his league debut, but with Rotherham United, who he joined on a three-month loan.
By this point O'Connell's displays for Blackburn's second string had also attracted attention from England's coaching team, and he was capped by the Under-18s.
After returning from his spell with Rotherham he was snapped up by York City, where he spent five months and really emerged as a real prospect.
Rochdale agreed a six-month loan deal for O'Connell last summer, which was soon extended to the full campaign, and his displays at Spotland have not gone unnoticed. Indeed he has also been handed the captain's armband by Keith Hill, such has been his progress.
He has also captained England's Under-19 side as he continues to be recognised at international level.
O'Connell is a cultured defender, and has a real touch of class about him as he often looks to bring the ball out of defence before looking to open up play.
O'Connell, who is also capable of operating at full-back, has an excellent left foot and he uses it with great effect to often try and switch play from the back.
Despite his inexperience, O'Connell has come on hugely in the past 18 months and he looks destined for a high level and it will be a shock if he is not involved with Blackburn in the Championship next season.
The scout says...
An outstanding prospect, who has made great strides since joining Blackburn. Very much one to watch and already has a number of Premier League clubs monitoring him.
The Scout rating...
Shooting: 5 out of 10
Passing: 7 out of 10
Tackling: 7 out of 10
Heading: 7 out of 10
Pace: 6 out of 10
Vision: 6 out of 10
Current ability: 6 out of 10
Potential ability: 8 out of 10
OVERALL SCOUT RATING: 52/80
Current value: £500,000
Potential value: £8million
Your opinion...You have read our opinion of Jack O'Connell - now we want your views. Have you seen O'Connell in action? Do you agree with our assessment? Do you think he will make it?
Get in touch, either using the form below, email or the scout's Twitter feed - @skysportsscout.