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A Protective Arm.....
A Protective Arm.....
Sunday, 16th Sep 2007 00:00

A Protective Arm For Allen

A Protective Arm For Allen

Roberto Martinez has thrown a protective arm around Joe Allen to help build his career not just on the pitch but off the pitch.

The 17 year old has been the revelation of the season so far with some stunning performances. Two man of the match performances in the Carling Cup - one against Premiership Reading were made either side of his scoring international debut for Wales at Under-21 level. Add to that a three year contract, TV exposure and last week his full league debut and it's been quite a 6 week period for the youngster from Narberth.

Allen will miss tonight's trip to Cheltenham through injury but could return to the squad for the weekend game at Elland Road against unbeaten Leeds.

But Martinez is keen to ensure that Allen keeps his feet on the ground despite being under no illusion himself as to the talent that he is managing "Joe Allen showed everyone what a fantastic player he is against Carlisle," Martinez told the Western Mail. "He had a clear role to get on the ball, to make us tick and make us play. The maturity he showed was typical of him, his football is very confident.

"He can see a pass and he is never afraid of the ball, his first touch is special. The easy thing for a manager is always to go for old players, but against Carlisle he just came to terms with it.

"It's important to give him the right sort of interviews and the right amount.

"It's part of our job - the whole staff at Swansea City - to be careful with him and isolate him a little bit from the media, but at the same time slowly give him a taste of that.

"As a professional footballer that's part of the job and, because of the character he is, it's something that's not going to affect him.

"He knows what he is about as a football player and as a person. He's a very smart guy that knows exactly what he wants. When you are working with that sort of person the job from my side becomes easy - it is a beautiful part of the job."

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