On Friday morning, Joe Hodge completed a move from Man City to fellow Premier League side Wolves on a three-year-deal.
It has been a frustrating few months for Hodge, with injury putting pay to his loan spell at Derry City. The 18-year-old's stint at the Candystripes was set to be his first taste of a senior footballing environment. However, he failed to make an appearance.
Despite this, he remains an exciting prospect. Wolves' technical director Scott Sellars is excited to bring him into the club's youth setup.
I’ve known Joe a long time, he has a good pedigree and had a good education at City and at international level, and we think we can continue his development at Wolves,"
He’s coming in with an injury so won’t be fit straight away. We knew that, but he’s got a lot of quality, a great personality.
He’s an intelligent footballer, a good passer of the ball and breaks things up. He’s somebody with a lot of potential.
You look at every avenue to find a talented player, whether he’s nine or 18, it doesn’t matter, you’re always looking for talent to bring in.
A lot of our under-18s are going out on loan, so the position Joe plays, we had an opportunity to bring someone in and there is a clear pathway in that position.
Joe Hodge Makes His Move To Wolves From Man City
Hodge is one of many exciting talents involved in the Irish set-up at his age group, and his move to Molineux emphasises that.
Only last year, Hodge won the Man City Scholar of the Year award, and penned his professional contract at the club in August.
While at the club as a scholar, the teenage midfielder played in the FA Youth Cup Final, joining a long list of Irish names who have played in it.
That also included a number of impressive performances in the green jersey in the underage grades.
He was part of the Ireland U19 side that reached the semi-final of the European Championship's in 2019.
Even though they would lose that game 4-0 against Portugal, Hodge impressed suitably during the competition.
With Joe Hodge on the verge of a move to the LOI lets look at his achievements so far
- A vital goal in the 2019 U19 European Championships
- 2020 FA Youth Cup winner
- Under 19 Ireland international at 16 years old
- A period of senior football could take him to the next level pic.twitter.com/9v4GJTn04L
— Rep of Ireland Player Tracker (@RepTracker) February 3, 2021
It is never easy to make the the breakthrough at a club like City, and for Hodge not to have done so may be a disappointment.
However, his move to Wolves will be a welcome shot in the arm for him as he continues his footballing journey.