Neal Ardley said that Egli Kaja produced exactly the response he wanted this season and that has put the attacking midfielder into first-team contention.
The 20-year-old had earned rave reviews from development coach Alan Reeves in recent seasons, but the manager called on Egli to replicate those performances at senior level.
Speaking during his interview for iFollow ahead of the trip to Oxford United, Neal said: “He has been brilliant. The big thing with Egli was that last season he was playing well for the Under-21s, but he could not transfer that into training with the first-team as much. That may have been a social thing or feeling a part of it, but this season he has felt a part of it, the boys have got on brilliantly with him, and it is showing. He feels that he should be at that level and you can see that with his performances. Egli is an honest lad, he works his socks off, and he has got a bit of pace. He is certainly now saying, ‘you can rely on me’ and it could be very soon that he gets his chance.”
In the video link below Neal also talks about how his working relationship with Alan Reeves is boosting the first-team and he provides a team news update ahead of Oxford.
Visit our iFollow channel for the full interview with Neal.