Paul Konchesky - bags of potential - 03/06/2003

Iíve noticed thereís been a bit of media speculation regarding Paul Koncheskyís situation at Charlton, both Liverpool and Newcastle have been linked to him. I honestly donít have any inside information, but what I do know is that the player has a massive amount of potential.

He made his first team debut at 16 - a very early age, and although Chris Powellís been the more established left back at the club, he certainly favours that left back berth. Having trained with the lad myself, I can tell you that heís lightening quick Ė rapido Ė and gets forward very well. He has the ability to get past people and whip in wicked crosses with pace. However, he also has the versatility to play in midfield Ė and thatís where heís played a fair percentage of the time at Charlton. It just goes to show how far Charlton have come; having two England left backís in their squad! Chris Powell is different type of left back; very steady, you know what youíre getting with him and as a result itís been difficult for Paul to dislodge him. But when he has played in midfield heís done very well. When facing Patrick Viera he was given instructions to sit on the Frenchman and cover his runs. He did fantastically well, stuck to him like glue and also had the scope to use his pace to get forward.

Paul's ambitious and wants to get back into the England set up Ė at left back, but although the press speculation may suggest heíll leave Charlton, personally Iíd be surprised. After turning 22 last month, heís got time on his side although if Chris Powell signs for another season, I do think that heíll have to play a fair degree of next terms games in midfield. Charlton certainly wont want to lose him, but if he does move on, whether itís this season or years down the line, Iím sure heíll be a very good acquisition.

Iíd also like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who helped out with my testimonial and also to those that showed their support by turning up. Itís very much appreciated and I hope you, like myself, really enjoyed the occasion. Thanks must also go to QPR and to Chelsea who brought along a top quality team. A couple of weeks later and Iím still running around tying up loose ends! Iím was happy with the gate, especially considering that QPR were involved in the play-offís, and it was nice to say goodbye to everyone. Iíve been lucky and very happy in my footballing career, and I'm also enjoying my media role in the game.

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