Kelland Watts is once again looking impressive in the EFL on loan at Wigan – so should a team swoop in and take him on a more permanent basis when the winter window opens?
The 22-year-old has been floating around the bottom two tiers of English football on various loan spells over the last few seasons, having generated only one Premier League appearance for his parent club Newcastle United so far.
At Mansfield, he looked solid despite limited gametime and then at Stevenage he continued to excel.
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Having made the jump up in level to League One by joining Plymouth on loan, he became a first-team regular and didn’t look out of his depth at all in the third tier. This campaign he finds himself in the same league again, having joined Wigan on a short-term basis.
He has once again become a mainstay in the team he has joined on loan and that’s as part of a side that are also right up near the top end of the table. With the youngster seemingly going from strength-to-strength, season-on-season, should a second tier side gamble for him in January?
There is no reason why a side couldn’t swoop in when the winter window opens and try and either hijack a loan deal for the player or even try and sign him up permanently. It would be disruptive to put an end to his time at the DW Stadium, especially during a season-long loan agreement, but there is no reason why it couldn’t be done.
If Newcastle were promised additional money and regular second tier action for the player, then there is no reason why they couldn’t recall him to send him out again.
Let’s also consider that Newcastle are now a wealthy team and although they might not want to sell a young talent, if a reasonable bid came in during the January window, who is to say they might not decide to cash-in?
Would it be worthwhile for a Championship team to sign him then?
The short answer is yes. Watts is still only young with plenty potential to get better and having seen how he has adapted to growing gametime and a rise in level each year, he has looked at ease and not out of place. This bodes well for him going forward and suggests that he has the potential to once again adapt well and manage a jump up in level.
He looks like he has the potential to be a solid addition to most backlines and could be available on the cheap too.
Any side on the hunt for a new defender in the winter window then should perhaps consider signing Watts. He might be somewhat of a gamble considering his lack of second tier experience so far but it could be a calculated risk, with a high ceiling and high potential reward.