TWENTY ONE-YEAR-old Liam Kelly received a spot of enormous news this week.
Martin O’Neill named the Reading attacking midfielder in his provisional 39-man squad for this month’s internationals with Wales and Iceland along with fellow first-timer John Egan.
Royals manager Jaap Stam gave Kelly his senior debut at the start of the season, and he has repaid the faith with a string of encouraging performances.
Despite Kelly’s slight frame, legendary Dutchman Stam — a Premier League and Champions League winner with Manchester United — has high hopes for him.
“I think it’s a great moment for Liam Kelly, and he deserves it as well,” Stam told the club’s YouTube channel.
“He’a very good player in what he has shown this season with us. In the games he’s played, he has been very impressive.
People always talk about his size and if it’s going to be a problem. But if you look at the top sides in Europe and in the world, a lot of players are the same size.
“He has got a lot of quality on the ball and he uses the physique that he has very well — even against big players.
“I’m not saying he’s the same as certain players of, for instance, Chelsea, but it doesn’t mean that you need to be big to perform in the Championship or the Premier League.
“He has been working very hard to prove it and he’s earned the call-up to the national team. It’s a very big compliment. ”
Watch the full interview below:Source: Reading Football Club/YouTube
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