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FOOTBALL: Ford's backing teenager Solomon-Otabor to shine
Oxford City boss Mike Ford has urged teenage forward Viv Solomon-Otabor to go out and express himself after signing on a youth loan deal from Birmingham City.
The 18-year-old winger will be at the Skrill North Club until the end of the season and is added to the squad for tomorrow’s home game against Gainsborough Trinity.
However, Ford said the prospects of the game going ahead were not good.
“I would say slim. It’s ridiculous – every time it rains the pitch flood. It’s got to be 50-50 to be on,” he commented.
Solomon-Otabor was recommended to Ford by former Oxford United manager Malcolm Crosby, who is now Birmingham’s chief scout.
Although yet to make a first-team appearance, he has been a regular in the club’s under 18 and under 21 sides.
And Ford is expecting good things from the talented teenager, who last week scored a hat-trick in the under 18’s 6-1 win against Millwall.
“I rang Malcolm and explained what I was looking for,” said Ford.
“And he didn’t take long to get back to me about Viv.
“When we played at Barrow last week, I felt we needed a bit more pace in the game.
“I looked at our bench and we were limited. We were short of a wide right player.
“He’s not going to play every week and might not even make his debut Saturday, but we need someone in that area.”
Ford said he was looking for Solomon-Otabor to help boost City’s bid to climb out of the bottom three.
He added:“Viv can bring pace, energy, goals and maybe a bit of ambition. I hope he wants to go back to Lee Clark (Birmingham’s boss) having impressed.
“I want him to go out and express himself and give us a shot in the arm.”
Defender Daniel Akubuine, 19, who joined last week from Skrill Premier side Nuneaton Town keeps his place in the squad after being an unused substitute at Barrow last weekend .
Oxford City (v Gainsborough Trinity, home): from Scott, Ballard, Stonehouse, Pook, Learoyd, Willmott, Benjamin, McNish, Symons, Pond, Winters, Basham, Cook, Bell, Henderson, West, Jackson, Akubuine, McEachran.
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