An English player who leaves the island for Europe is a rare thing. If he’s 18 years old, hasn’t played in the Premier League yet and is about to sign with an European top club, it’s as rare as it gets. Here is Bayern’s probably soon latest signing – who is…Dale Jennings?
18 years old, born in Liverpool, just played his first season as a professional for Tranmere Rovers (a club that plays in a stadium that’s only a couple of minutes away from his hometown), never played for one of England’s youth national teams – it shouldn’t be a surprise that there’s not so much to find out about Dale Jennings. So what’s better than having a person who watched him play on a regular basis describe the young Liverpudlian? I’m proud to introduce Paul Harper, the man behind the great Totally Tranmere Podcast to tell us a bit about Jennings. Make sure to follow Paul on Twitter.
When Dale Jennings broke into the Tranmere Rovers first team squad, people took notice. The precautious talent was relatively unknown, even among Tranmere fans, when he made his first team debut last season as a substitute against Charlton Athletic at Prenton Park. After 45 minutes of action in that fixture, they sure knew about him.
Tranmere have been blessed with having produced some great players from their youth system. Steve Simonsen, Ryan Taylor and Jason Koumas are just three names to have come through the ranks at Prenton Park to go on to play top flight football in recent years. With each one of them, you could tell from the first moment you saw them that they would make it at a higher level than Tranmere, and with Jennings, the exact same can be said.
During his debut, it was like a breath of fresh air around the stadium when he stepped foot on the pitch. He brought great energy, enthusiasm and no little ability to the game, and despite playing only the second half, was arguably the man of the match.
He’s a forward with very good technical ability. He is strong with both feet, has great pace and has a wicked shot on him, as he has shown on several occasions in a Tranmere shirt. None of his goals have been tap-ins, they have all been spectacular in one way or another, including one against Plymouth Argyle where he ran from the half way line, beating numerous defenders, before coolly slotting the ball home.
Exciting, talented players like Jennings don’t come around too often in football, especially not at a club like Tranmere Rovers. He has that star quality about him that makes him stand out from the crowd, that and the bright orange boots he wears!
As a Tranmere supporter myself, it has been a privilege to watch such a talented player play for my favourite club. As much as we would love to keep him, you have to be fair to him and admit that he could very easily play at a much higher level than Tranmere’s current League One status. He would be an asset to any top flight club, and if they could help him improve even further, then what a player they would have on their hands.