Nottingham Forest midfielder Ben Osborn, 21, has been named The Football League’s Young Player of the Month for January. The award covers players that play in all three divisions of the Sky Bet Football League.
Operating in the heart of the Forest midfield, Osborn was in outstanding form through January as Dougie Freedman’s men extended their unbeaten sequence in the Championship to 13 games. Picking up two wins and three draws in the month, the run began with a 1-1 draw at Charlton in which Osborn scored his first goal of the season. It also included an impressive 0-1 away win at Middlesborough with Osborn setting up Jamie Ward’s winning strike at the Riverside.
Having joined the club at the age of nine, Osborn progressed through the Nottingham Forest Academy before making his debut in March 2014. He went on to make 40 appearances in all competitions last season and has already appeared 23 times in 2015/16, establishing himself as an integral member of Forest’s first team.
On collecting The Football League’s Young Player of the Month Award for January. Osborn said:
“It was a bit of a shock. I have seen some of the players who have won it previously. It’s great to be recognised. I have never won anything like this before.
“I have been consistent and have added a couple of assists and a goal to go with that. I have been working hard and hopefully I can add a few goals for the team.”
Commenting on Osborn’s award, Nottingham Forest manager, Dougie Freedman said:
“Ben’s contribution has been fantastic, not just on the field but with the way he represents the club.
“His main assets are his energy and a wonderful left foot. He is really coming on. He is a good young player, who works hard every day and he has a real big future.”
Each season, Football League clubs invest more than £60m on identifying, training and educating the next generation of football talent.
There are 8,500 young players between the ages of 8 and 18 registered with League clubs, making Football League Youth Development the largest centrally co-ordinated young player programme in world football. Over 200 players aged 21 or under make their professional debuts for Football League clubs each season.
Commenting on Osborn’s award, David Wetherall, Head of Youth Development at The Football League, said:
“Nottingham Forest have been one of the Championship’s form teams of late and Ben’s performances in midfield have been a key factor in this successful run.
“It’s fantastic to see a home-grown Academy player like Ben playing such an influential role and I look forward to seeing how his career progresses from here.”
Each month the accolade is awarded by The Football League to the young player who has made the most significant contribution and impact in first team football.
For more information on the award and each month’s winner visit www.football-league.co.uk