Joe Lolley – The next Jamie Vardy in the making?
Joe Lolley, 26, is a winger who plays in the English Championship for Nottingham Forest. His performances are turning heads this season with a lot of clubs interested in the Forest man’s signature. Is Lolley the gem to follow in Vardy’s footsteps?
The Forest winger, is enjoying his second season in Nottingham after providing seven goals and seven assists in the Championship so far.
His spectacular performance against Aston Villa earlier in the season was the moment as a football fan we were watching a special talent. One unbelievable goal and four assists in that game was not enough for Forest to take the win, in a 5-5 draw with Villa.
The ex Huddersfield player, has a very similar humble beginning like Vardy. After plying his trade for Littleton FC in the Midland Combination League at the time, he managed an impressive 88 goals in 83 games.
This was enough to see him make the step up to Kidderminster Harriers, who at the time were in the National Conference. He spent very little time with the Harriers as he was being chased by numerous professional clubs such as Peterborough and Huddersfield.
While he was at ‘the Aggies’, he scored over ten goals in his short time at the club and made his name in the FA Cup when he scored the winner against Peterborough., the club who had their bid rejected for the Kidderminster headliner.
The very next day, the fairytale story continued with a big move to Championship promotion chasing Huddersfield.
From playing in fields in the middle of nowhere to stepping foot in stadiums holding over 20,000, it was a dream move for the Birmingham boy.
He was an instant hit with the Terrier fans as his exciting footwork and desire to get past players was keeping fans on the edge of their seats.
However, during his three and a half-year spell at the Yorkshire club he found chances difficult due to injuries that held him back in the promotion season of 2016-17.
Although, he saw very little action in the Premier League, he did make a few appearances for Huddersfield in the league every footballer dreams of playing in.
With many clubs knocking on the door for Lolley. Forest will be hoping they can keep hold of their prized asset.
Though it looks like Forest will be spending another season in the Championship and with Premier League clubs paying close attention to the 26 year-old’s situation. They know he will be eager to prove he is top flight English quality just like Vardy.
Jamie Vardy, set the bar high for any aspiring non league player to replicate his success. Some would say you will never see a player do that again. From winning the Conference to winning the Premier League to appearing for England, this is how fairy tales are written.
A strong last half to the season will certainly be enough to see Premier League clubs fight over the exciting winger.
Will we see Lolley’s name light up the Premier League in the future and become an England international? Or will he remain a fan favourite in the Football League?
Only time will tell for the hard-working humble Forest star.