Burnley are lining up a £9million bid for 17-year-old Middlesbrough defender Nathan Wood, The Sun have reported.
It is thought that the Clarets could make their move for the teenager as early as the January transfer window, with fellow Premier League sides Arsenal, Tottenham and Everton also said to have kept tabs on the defender.
With so much speculation around Wood at the minute, it may be tempting for him to start thinking about a move to the promised land of the Premier League, although you have to wonder whether that is the best thing for the youngster right now.
Here, we’ve looked at three reasons why Wood may be better off ignoring that interest from the top flight for the time being.
The opportunities are starting to come at Middlesbrough
While he has yet to feature in the Championship for ‘Boro, Wood is already starting to enjoy the experiences of first-team football with the club.
After becoming the club’s youngest ever player when he featured in the Carabao Cup for ‘Boro last season, Wood again appeared for Jonathan Woodgate’s side in the competition last season.
Having also found himself on the bench for ‘Boro for several Championship games since the start of last, that first league appearance may not be far away.
In contrast to that, a move to the Premier League is unlikely to see Wood get many first-team opportunities anytime soon, when you consider the ability and experience of the defences of some of those clubs that have been linked with him, which could hinder the progress he appears to be making at the Riverside, were he to make the step up too quickly.
It could reflect well on him in the future
If Wood does indeed decide to remain at Middlesbrough despite that interest from the Premier League, then it may well show maturity beyond his age, given the appeal a move to the Premier League undoubtedly holds.
Making such a decision would surely mean that Wood would be turning down an improved deal in favour of greater first-team opportunities, and that may help him further on his career.
It would demonstrate Wood’s determination to make a name for himself at senior level, while also showing his loyalty to the side that have given him that opportunity, and those would surely be the sort of traits that managers may look at when deciding whether to move for Wood in a few years time, which could potentially earn him an even better deal than the one he is looking at now.
It would earn him a few fans at the Riverside
Considering his young age and fleeting appearances for the club, it may not be unreasonable to suggest that there may be more than a few Middlesbrough fans who hadn’t heard about Nathan Wood previously.
Given the recent rumours, however, that is something that will surely now be set to change, and that too is something that could benefit Wood should he decide to stay put.
Those around the Riverside will also know the potential rewards of a move to the Premier League for Wood, so the commitment to Middlesbrough that he would be showing by remaining with the club would surely make him a popular figure within the stands of the Riverside Stadium.
That is something that would surely give the defender the chance to enjoy some vociferous backing when he does make his next appearance for the club, and potentially make him something of a cult figure at the club should he become a success on the pitch as well.