Next 20 Round Up: 2016/17 season
Kick It Out’s ‘Next 20’ initiative involves players from across the Premier League, English Football League (EFL) and Women’s Super League, who represent the organisation as ambassadors and help to spread the key messages of equality and inclusion.
With the 2016/17 season finished, Joe Gibbs reflects on how our ambassadors fared on the pitch throughout the previous campaign.
Gael kick started the 2016/17 season with a return to his boyhood club Coventry City on a one-year-deal.
Gael went on to make thirty appearances for the club and scored the first goal of Coventry’s 2-1 win over Oxford United in the 2016-2017 EFL Trophy Final. He has since joined Motherwell.
After suffering a major injury setback in March 2015 during an International Friendly against Germany, Jack was given the green light and began pre-season training with the Stoke first-team. Unfortunately Jack missed the opening game of the 2016/17 season due to another injury and eventually underwent ankle surgery in September of 2016.
After months on the sidelines, Jack was given the all clear and went on to make his first Premier League appearance of the 2016/17 season against Swansea City. He made a further five appearances for the Stoke team and made an instant impact keeping two clean sheets and helping his team to secure 13th position in the league.
Nathaniel made his first-team debut on 20 September 2016 in the second round win over Leicester City in the EFL Cup. Nathaniel went on to make 15 appearances for the Chelsea first-team and even helped to secure the Premier League title.
In May, Nathaniel was chosen to represent England U21’s at the UEFA Under-21 European Championships and helped guide the semi-finals.
Ben had a fantastic 2016/17 season, making a total of 36 appearances and scoring two goals for both club and country. He scored his first goal for Tottenham Hotspur in an FA Cup tie against Aston Villa on 8 January 2017. Davies signed a new four-year contract for the club on 9 March 2017, extending his time at the club to 2021.
Toni ended her impressive 2016/17 season with a total on 26 club appearances accompanied by six goals in all competitions. Her most notable goal came against Brondby in the Champions League.
Wes made over 40 appearances in all competitions for the 54 time Scottish League champions last season and kept an impressive 15 clean sheets along the way.
It would prove to be a successful for the 24-year-old defender. Michael racked up an impressive 40 appearances in all competitions for The Chairboys. Harriman played a vital role in Wycombe’s successful FA Cup run taking them to the Fourth Round.
It’s safe to say Arsenal and England International Carl Jenkinson had a frustrating season. Hampered by injury, Carl was forced to watch on from the sidelines and could only manage a total of five appearances in all competitions for the Gunners.
The 2016/17 season was an outstanding one for the St Kitts and Nevis international as he enjoyed his first season in the Championship after joining Brentford in the summer. Romaine boasted an impressive appearance tally of 45 along with three goals and eight assists.
Callum started off the 2016/17 season well, scoring six goals in 21 games. However, an unfortunate injury hampered his progress. In February, Callum ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and will not feature for the Cherries until next season.
Jason impressed continuously over the 2016/17 campaign and racked up over 49 appearances accompanied by three assists. After captaining the team for the first time in the 4-1 defeat to Norwich, Jason wore the armband in almost every game for the rest of the season.
Despite his best efforts, Jason was unable to help Blackburn avoid relegation as Rovers were pushed down to League One. At the end of the 2016/17, Lowe was a free agent.
As the 2016/17 season progressed Romelu Lukaku emerged as one of Europe’s most prolific goal scorers. After racking up an outstanding 26 goals in 39 games in all competitions, Romelu has attracted attention from clubs around the globe. Romelu’s outstanding efforts helped Everton to an impressive seventh in the league.
The 2016/17 campaign was a breakthrough season for the Hull defender. Towards the back of the season Harry emerged as one of the best defenders in the league, his excellent form has seen him secure a £17-million-pound transfer to Leicester City.
Harry made 36 appearances in all competitions.
2017 has been an outstanding year for Jordan so far, bagging eight goals in as many games for the Gunners. Jordan’s form was carried onto the international stage as she scored an impressive 12 goals in 12 games for the England national team during 2016/17.
The 26-year-old enjoyed a fruitful 2016/17 campaign racking up a total of 27 appearances and three goals for Milton Keynes Dons.
However, Daniel was released by the League One side and after making 271 appearances and scoring 46 goals across nine seasons. In May, he agreed to join rivals Northampton Town on a 2-year deal.
After signing for Southampton last summer, Nathan made over 50 appearances for the Saints scoring eight goals. Nathan’s first competitive goal for Southampton came in a 1-1 draw against Watford on 13 August.
In May, Nathan was chosen to represent the England U21’s at the UEFA Under-21 European Championship. He grabbed the winner against Slovakia and ultimately helped the team to the semi-finals.
Andre went on load to Austrian Bundesliga champions Red Bull Salzburg on a season-long loan and made an impressive 25 appearances for The Red Bulls. Andre is set to join Derby County permanently for the 2017/18 season.