Coventry City are currently stuck in a battle to avoid the drop from the Championship this season, with manager Mark Robins doing everything he can to not make the Sky Blues’ stay in the second tier a brief one.
Good news has been flowing out of the club even if results generally haven’t, with a move back to the Ricoh Arena signed and sealed for the start of next season.
And they’ll be hoping to grace it and the return of fans with Championship football, but Rotherham have three games in hand on Cov and Birmingham City have potentially a new manager bounce with Lee Bowyer’s recent appointment.
Whatever league the Sky Blues end up in, they will no doubt be sending some players on loan just like they have this season – let’s look at two who should be getting more experience of football away from Cov.
Attacking midfielder Bapaga started training with the senior side in the summer of 2019, which was a big surprise considering he was only 16 years old at the time.
But if you’re good enough, you’re old enough and in August of that year, Bapaga made his Cov debut by coming off the bench in a League One clash against Bolton.
Bapaga made a few more appearances that season in the EFL Trophy and he’s continued to experience being in and around the first team since promotion to the Championship – Robins has selected him as a substitute 19 times and he’s come off the bench twice against Preston North End and Millwall.
Game-time also came in the FA Cup and the EFL Cup, and whilst Bapaga has been a regular for the under-23 squad, Cov fans have been anticipating seeing more of him in a first team shirt, but it hasn’t happened just yet.
Now 18 years old, Bapaga could do with a season-long loan away from the club next season, perhaps in League Two where he could come up against strong defenders, but it would give him a platform to showcase his abilities and develop as a player.
If you don’t get at least 15/20 on this Coventry City midfielder quiz, can you really call yourself a Sky Blues fan?
Portuguese striker Tavares was perhaps a surprise mid-season signing for Cov, arriving on deadline day from League One side Rochdale.
The 20-year-old made 12 appearances off the bench for Dale in the EFL this season, getting on the scoresheet once in a 2-1 victory over Fleetwood.
Tavares spent time on loan at non-league Curzon Ashton before it was cut short due to COVID-19, and he’s by no means the finished article but has been playing for Cov’s under-23 team since arriving.
Like Bapaga though (although a few years ahead of him), Tavares could do with a loan spell in League Two to give him some regular senior minutes, as it would prepare him for a future with the Sky Blues if he turns out to be good enough.