Crystal Palace supporters are regularly calling on the club to bring through exciting young talent from the academy – as do the supporters of most clubs – so it came as a surprise to see the release of Drew Matthews this summer.
Matthews, at one stage, was Palace’s captain at youth level and heavily touted to play a part in the first team for years to come. That idea was squashed this summer though, as the 19-year-old was released upon the expiry of his contract.
Today he begins a new challenge though, joining Isthmian League Premier Division side Burgess Hill Town and supporters of the West Sussex club are rightly considering it as a coup.
Twitter: @Official_BHTFC @DrewMatthews99 Quality player well done good to see you at the club @DrewMatthews99 (@PaulFow53658209)
Twitter: @Official_BHTFC @DrewMatthews99 Excellent signing (@RobBoxall7)
Twitter: @Official_BHTFC @DrewMatthews99 Welcome to the Hillians @DrewMatthews99 (@BHillRadio)
Read Crystal Palace’s verdict
Matthews’ release came as a surprise following his exploits coming through the ranks at Palace, but you’ve got to trust Roy Hodgson’s judgement with young talent; use Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s emergence as proof of that.
Who knows, the defender is still very young and has plenty of time to work his way back up to the level he wants to be at and we may see him back at Selhurst Park in the future.