Noel Whelan was blown away by Anthony Gordon’s performance for Everton in the Merseyside derby on Sunday.
The former Leeds United and Coventry striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, was mightily impressed by the midfielder’s hard-working display alongside Tom Davie and Andre Gomes.
The 19-year-old made his third Premier League appearance and in the goalless draw against Liverpool.
The teenager did not look out of sorts among Europes best at Goodison Park and was unlucky not to finish on the winning side with the Toffees creating the better chances.
Whelan suggested managers will be more open to playing their talent behind closed doors as there is less pressure without fans.
“Now is a good time to blood these young players,” he told Football Insider.
“There is no fans and there is not much pressure on them. They can go out there and give a good account of themselves.
“It can be hard as a young player coming in with fans there, especially in a Merseyside derby. There is so much resting on the games and fans can sometimes hurt a player’s confidence early in the game.
“It is easier with no fans to give these youngsters a chance.
“I thought he had a fantastic game against top-quality opposition.
“It is great for his career and he will have learned a lot about himself from that game.”
Gordon has three years left on his contract at Goodison Park having signed a new deal in March last year.
The academy graduate has been in scintillating form for David Unsworth’s Under-23s this season and score six goals in nine Premier League 2 appearances.
In other Everton news, Kevin Phillips claims top transfer target ‘knows his next club’ after big development.
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