Some notes on young Spurs striker Kion Etete following his summer switch from Notts County:
Having now watched Spurs’ young centre forward Kion Reece Etete on over 20 occasions, I thought that I’d write a short piece on the second year scholar, to give Spurs fans a feel for what type of player the 18 year old is. Etete who is from Derby in the East Midlands, where he attended the Chellaston Academy, is a tall and physical striker. After going on trial with Spurs in the spring of the 2018/19 season from then league two club Notts County, Etete signed terms with Spurs in June ahead of the start of the 2019/20 season. The second year scholar who was a consistent performer for Notts County’s under 18’s and under 23’s (he also featured on six occasions for the ‘ Magpies ’ first team), impressed greatly on his under 18 debut for Spurs against West Ham when on trial last March. In the game against the ‘ Hammers ’ Etete scored two goals. However, Etete soon returned to Notts County although a number of big clubs were still trying to sign him. Etete returned to Spurs in May to travel with an under 19 side that competed in the end of season Terborg tournament in the Netherlands, where he was involved in four of the five matches that Spurs played.
Etete’s first involvement for Spurs as a permanent signing was at the pre-season Tournoi Europeen in France, at the start of the current campaign. Etete did well in the matches that he was involved in for Wayne Burnett’s development side, and he also scored a goal in the group game against French side SM Caen. Kion however, would start the 2019/20 season with our under 18’s. He started games against the likes of Fulham, Brighton, Swansea and West Ham at the beginning of the campaign. Where he led the line for Matt Taylor’s side in the absence of Troy Parrott who had been promoted to the first team squad. In fact Etete has been a regular and consistent performer for our under 18 side for the most part of this season, with the exception of a spell on the sidelines and some involvement with the development side where he hasn’t looked out of place (Etete impressed greatly on his full PL2 debut against Wolverhampton Wanderers back in October, where he led the line well). To describe Etete as a player, he is a tall and very physical centre forward. Not too unlike a young Peter Crouch to an extent (a player who also came through the youth ranks at Spurs) Etete is excellent in the air and is a good header of the ball, hence why a lot of his goals are scored with his head.
In addition, the second year scholar whose first team experience with Notts County shows in his play, is a skilful player who has quick feet. Again drawing back to my earlier comparisons with Peter Crouch who was a very skilful player in his own right. Etete has shown really good close ball control and skill in the games that he has been involved in for Spurs this season. Furthermore, the 18 year olds hold up play is another of his best attributes, and it is something which he is very good at. Being able to shield the ball with his strength and being able to bring others into the game, is a great asset of Etete’s. Kion tends to lean into opposing teams defenders and he makes himself a real handful. A prime example of this was in our under 18’s FA Youth Cup fourth round game against Wigan Athletic earlier in the month, where Etete really bothered the Wigan defenders by leaning into, and bullying them for large periods of the game. He also did a good job at winding them up and frustrating them by being relentless in his role as a target man. Etete also did well at laying the ball off for his teammates, and this is something that he is usually very good at. Apart from using his physicality to good effect, the former Notts County man is also a real grafter for the team, and he is also a good presser.
I have been impressed so far this season with Etete’s attitude on the pitch and his willingness to press the opposing teams defenders into making errors. He also likes to made strong slide tackles and he certainly isn’t afraid to get stuck in. The young centre forward who is also eligible to represent Nigeria at international level, is essentially a target man however, let’s talk about his finishing and striking ability. Etete has a venomous right foot as he has shown on numerous occasions since I first started watching him play, and he also has a tendency to shoot from range. While the 18 year old may lack the pace of the slightly younger Troy Parrott, he is still very good in front of goal. Etete shows good composure in front of goal, he also takes up intelligent positions in and around the danger zone, and he also times his runs well. So far this season Etete has been involved in nine goals from 17 competitive appearances (six goals and three assists) for Spurs this season at under 18, 19 and 23 level. That’s quite an impressive return from the young man who also found the back of the net in a behind closed doors friendly against Beijing Renhe, yesterday. As I bring this short article to a close I’d just like to focus on two games that Etete has been involved in for our under 18’s this season, those games were against Leicester City and Swansea City.
In the game against Leicester City back in December 2019, Etete led the line with aplomb. He worked hard throughout the game, he pressed the ‘ Foxes ’ defenders relentlessly and he scrapped well for the ball. Etete also held the ball up really well and he netted a fine goal. After receiving the ball with his back to goal inside the Leicester penalty area in the first half, Etete turned sharply onto his right foot before rifling the ball into the bottom left hand corner of the goal. It was an excellent all round performance from the Spurs striker. In addition, in Etete’s most recent game for our under 18’s (last Saturday’s game against Swansea City) Etete put in arguably his best performance of the season thus far for Spurs. Once again he held the ball up brilliantly against the ‘ Swans ’ as well as linking up well with the two Spurs wingers and the CAM (Max Robson) who he helped to bring into the game. However, Etete also took up intelligent positions and he made some good runs in behind the Swansea defenders. He was also dominant in the air and he scored a good headed goal during the early part of the game. Etete also hit a wicked effort from around 25 yards out from goal a whisker wide of the Swansea goalkeepers near post. He gave a great account of himself. Etete is clearly a promising young talent and I look forward to following his progress for Spurs over the next couple of seasons. Kion should be proud of how he has adapted to life at Spurs and I would like to wish him all the very best of luck for the remainder of the season.