England's Rose blossoming at Spurs

ANY Spurs fans who made the trip down to Bournemouth last Friday night will have left Dean Court with a new name on their lips. Amid the big-name giants of the Spurs team, it was a diminutive, little-known 19-year-old who lit up the first half...

By Ben Pearce

ANY Spurs fans who made the trip down to Bournemouth last Friday night will have left Dean Court with a new name on their lips.

Amid the big-name giants of the Spurs team, it was a diminutive, little-known 19-year-old who lit up the first half.

Even a stratospheric 30-yard volley was accompanied by gasps of anticipation as it plummeted into the car park - and for half an hour both sets of fans were united in appreciation as they witnessed the birth of a new Tottenham star.

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Danny Rose may not be a household name, but he has been on standby for stardom for the last 18 months - in January 2008 Juande Ramos put him on the bench as Sunderland visited White Hart Lane.

A serious knee injury last September effectively ruled the prodigious teenager out for the season and, following his recovery, Harry Redknapp loaned him out to Watford.

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Rose had slipped below the radar of the Premier League, but he exploded back onto the scene this summer as Stuart Pearce called him up for the Under-21 European Championship.

The Spurs prospect served notice of his talent with two assists during a 35-minute cameo in a friendly against Azerbaijan.

During the tournament the midfielder's involvement was restricted to a full game in the last group match against Germany, and even though England finished as beaten finalists, Rose was glad to be involved.

"It was a long summer, but it was a good experience being out in Sweden with the Under-21s," he told the Journal.

"I didn't get to play that much but when I did play I thought I did well. We were unlucky in the final but it was a very valuable experience.

"I didn't get much of a break but being out there with those kind of players was worth it. The training was a lot faster than the Under-19s training - everyone gives 100 per cent and the togetherness was great on a long trip, so I felt I learnt a lot."

Despite his arduous summer, Rose is raring to go again at Tottenham and, having started against Bournemouth, he is back on the fringes of the first-team squad.

Redknapp may have other plans for the talented teen as he continues to organise loan deals for some of his up-and-coming Lilywhites.

Rose hopes he has done enough to stay at Spurs Lodge but, regardless of what his boss decides, the pacy youngster is convinced his future is in safe hands.

"I'd like to think I'd be around the first-team squad here but obviously if he [Redknapp] feels it would be more valuable for me to go out on loan for six months and get some games in the Championship, then I'll do that," he said.

"I think the lads go to China in a few days so I'll sit down and speak with the manager and see what he thinks is best for me to do.

"There's definitely a feeling that young English players are getting a chance under this manager.

"Straight away when he arrived he was playing the likes of John Bostock, Dean Parrett and John Obika in the Uefa Cup, and in one of the games the bench was just full of the youth team, so the future for the young English Spurs players is definitely looking bright."

That was plain for all to see as Rose annihilated Cherries right-back Lee Bradbury on the left flank on Friday. There was no end product but it was thrilling viewing, and it suddenly dawned that this seemed to be a left-sided version of Aaron Lennon.

At times the likeness was uncanny, not only because the pair are almost identical in height and stature, but because Rose's dribbling style - with one arm sticking out - looked like a very accurate impression of Lennon's.

The similarity extends further, as both players joined Spurs from Leeds for �1million as emerging teenagers.

Friday's performance evoked visions of a future Lennon/Rose combo, but that is some way off - partly because 5ft 8ins Rose has a surprising aspiration to play in central midfield. Fortunately he has spotted the vacant position in the Spurs team, and is willing to adapt.

"I prefer to play in the middle, but obviously we've got quite a few central midfielders," he said. "There's only really me and Jamie [O'Hara] who can play out on the left - and Luka [Modric] - but Luka's naturally right-footed.

"The left-wing spot is a position that's available, and if it's there, well I'd like to play anywhere. I'd play right-back! But I'd like to think I could do a job on the left wing for Spurs any day.

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