Date: 27th July 2010 at 11:20am
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Crewe’s 16 year old prodigy Nick Powell is to get his first taste of professional football with a run out against Premier League Blackpool tonight.

The newly signed scholar has been named in Dario’s squad for tonight’s friendly at Gresty Road and the Alex manager says that the England U-17 international will hopefully get 30 minutes to show his talent tonight.

Speaking to crewealex.net, Dario said:

‘We wanted to play 4-3-3 but I am short on midfielders and considered reverting back to 4-4-2 but with Nick playing well lately we decided to give him a chance. We will see if he can come in and do that job in the three.

‘The fans may know about him from the publicity the young lads have had but this may be the first opportunity they have to watch him play. Hopefully, that will attract a few more to the ground this evening.’


And the fans do know about him having seen his name linked, along with team mate Max Clayton, to the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool over the last couple of years.

Having emerged through the academy, both Powell and Clayton have gone on to star for England U-17s whilst Clayton has been selected for England U-17s squad to play in the Nordic Tournament next month.

With the U-17’s crop at the Alex widely regarded as the best group ever to come through the renowned academy system, the club were delighted when nine youngsters – including Powell and Clayton – committed their futures to the club this summer. However, despite much hype, until now Dario has kept his cards close to his chest in regards to when the likes of Powell would be moved up to the first team.

Meanwhile, Dario is set to field a strong side to face Blackpool tonight. Having been rested for Saturday’s trip to Nantwich, Dario is set to name his strongest side with the possible inclusion of trialists Jimmy McCarthy, Danny Maguire and Bartek Fogler.