THE SECRET SCOUT: Tom Pearce has a chance to make his mark at Wigan Athletic after being displaced at Leeds and suffering through a spell of injury
- Tom Pearce has a chance to shine at Wigan after being ousted at Leeds United
- The 22-year-old left back is looking fit after injury and is taking responsibility
- He will just need to make sure he is not beaten by getting too square to his man
Our scout is a top football expert who attends matches each week searching for the next star. He’ll bring you his verdict in Sportsmail.
This week they bring you the lowdown and verdict on Wigan Athletic left back Tom Pearce.
What has he got?
TOM PEARCE FACTS
Club: Wigan Athletic
Position: Left back
Opportunities come in all forms and for all reasons.
Not long ago, this player was doing well at Leeds but he was displaced by Barry Douglas under coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Now part of a decimated Wigan Athletic set-up, it’s not too late for him to make his mark. This left-footed left back has seen many colleagues depart this summer as the club has suffered terrible financial hardship.
Here, I saw a player who looks fit after a spell of injury, taking responsibility in the Wigan defence.
When going forward, he showed purpose and in 20 first-half minutes he surged upfield on three separate occasions, providing two excellent crosses as he combined effectively with his experienced wide man.
On the third occasion his determination forced a corner as he was hit by a last-gasp tackle at the byline.
In a first half where his team were poor defensively on the other side of the field, he did well to get into decent covering positions to cope with unopposed crosses.
Tom Pearce looks fit after a spell of injury, and is taking responsibility in the Wigan defence
What does he need?
When having to defend, he was adequate in one-v-one situations, but once he got too square on to his opponent and was beaten by a push and run.
He must watch out for this. On the whole, however, he was not exposed. This will be a difficult season for Pearce and his club. For the moment he will have his experienced manager John Sheridan — once a classy passer of the ball — to guide him. Pearce passes it simply. He has a strong left foot and a nice build for a full back — not too tall or sluggish on the turn and not too small to cope with aerial threats.
He has been in the shadows but was well scouted and represented England at Under 20 and Under 21 level. He was considered a big talent. There are many reasons a player’s career can stall and injuries certainly don’t help. At 22, Pearce will have a crucial role this season in a patched-up team. He should seize the opportunity.
He has been in the shadows but was well scouted and represented England at U20 and U21
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