In his very first season of senior football, 18-year-old Reece James has been one of the standout players not only in Chelsea’s Loan Army but Wigan Athletic and the entire second division in England as well. Deservedly enough, he made the cut for Team of the Season.
Given the consistency of James’ excellent displays for the Latics this season, this recognition was not that surprising, though he was pipped to a nomination for the EFL Young Player of the Year award by fellow Championship right-back Max Aarons! Still, it speaks volumes that he’s been named in the Best XI despite playing for a side who are still in the relegation battle, whereas most of the players are from the top six teams.
Deployed most often as a right back, holding strong in the defensive third and being Wigan’s most creative player with dangerous crosses in the final third, James has also spent over 500 minutes as a central midfielder. Manager Paul Cook has been far from hesitant to select him over natural, more experienced players.
James was even pictured training with the England senior national team during the international break, just as the likes of Trevoh Chalobah and Mason Mount before him. The only way is up for young Reece, hopefully he can help Wigan avoid the drop and make the step up to a higher level next season.
Needless to say, his teammates, including club captain Sam Morsy, think of him just as highly as we do.