Irish under-21 international Aaron Connolly has gotten his Premier League career off to the dream start. Connolly earned his first-ever Premier League start for Brighton in today’s game.
Connolly was somewhat thrown in at the deep-end, with his first start coming vs Tottenham. He’s surely done more than enough to earn a spot in next week’s team after this weekend’s game. Connolly bagged 2 goals to help his side to a memorable 3-0 victory over Spurs.
The 19-year-old’s performance will be pleasing to the eyes of Irish football fans. Connolly got his Premier League tally off the mark in the 32nd minute of the game.
Connolly’s excellent movement helped him to peel away from Jan Vertonghen in the Spurs box. He subsequently got onto the end of Dan Burn’s cross ahead of a scrambling Ben Davies. Stand-in Spurs goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga stopped Connolly’s ambitious first-time strike. However, the young forward did well to follow-up and put away the rebound.
Connolly relentlessly ran the Spurs defence ragged in this game. His movement once again stood out for his second goal, coming in the 65th minute. Connolly ran across the Spurs defence and got into space to be at the end of Lewis Dunk’s ball. He subsequently took the ball deep into the Spurs half and finished calmly into the far-side of the net.
Connolly looked like a player who belonged in the Premier League vs Spurs. He showed energy, enthusiasm, athleticism and an abundance of confidence. These are traits which are often left to be desired in Irish football. Connolly’s development will be interesting to all Irish football fans.
Aaron Connolly has progressed encouragingly in the past year. Last season, he was named the Premier League 2 player of the year, scoring 11 goals in 15 appearances for Brighton’s under-23 side.
Brighton’s manager Graham Potter will certainly have been excited at the prospect of nurturing the young forward’s talent. Working with the young coach could be an excellent opportunity for Aaron Connolly. Potter is known for his tactical knowledge and flexibility. Brighton may be the perfect school for a young player like Connolly to learn the game.