Ravel Morrison, remember him? Sure you should! He was the next big thing in football at one time. He was highly rated.
With news of Ravel Morrison’s imminent move from Lazio to Swedish club, Ostersunds making the rounds recently, we take a look at how one of the most promising youth players failed to maximise his potential.
The praise about Morrison’s potential was endless, the biggest names in football, including Sir Alex Ferguson and Big Sam Allardyce recognised his undoubted talent from a very young age but he has so far been overshadowed for years by legal issues and question marks over his attitude and commitment to football.
Generally regarded as the most naturally gifted member of the Manchester United class of 2011 Youth Cup winning team which included Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard, Ravel’s career has taken a very different direction to that of his two former teammates who are now key players for Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s Manchester United.
Another of Ravel Morrison’s admirers was Manchester United legend, Rio Ferdinand who was famously quoted saying : ” I would pay to watch him train let alone play in a match.”
His off-field problems would eventually overshadow his evident talent and as the number of court appearances mounted, his chances of succeeding at Old Trafford diminished which would then see him depart Man United much to the dismay of the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson.
A direct quote from Sir Alex Ferguson read: “Ravel Morrison might be the saddest case. He possessed as much natural talent as any youngster we ever signed, but kept getting into trouble.
“It was very painful to sell him to West Ham in 2012 because he could have been a fantastic player. But, over a period of years, the problems off the pitch continued to escalate and we had little option but to cut the cord.”
He joined West Ham who were then a championship club in the January transfer window of 2012 and just when it was starting to look like he could make his mark at Upton Park he was back in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.
It all went downhill from there and when West Ham terminated his contract in February 2015, Morrison signed for Italian Serie A club, Lazio in a bid to follow in the footsteps of controversial talents like Paul Gascoigne and Paolo Di Canio and revive his career in Italy’s capital city.
However, nothing worked out as he and the footballing world had quietly hoped and his stay in Italy was pretty much over before it started as he made a just a handful of appearances amid constant rumours he wasn’t happy in Rome, also tainted with several ineffective loan spells, Ravel Morrison once again finds himself leaving yet another club this time to join the far less prestigious Swedish league.
Till this moment it’s hard to pinpoint where exactly Ravel Morrison went from the world’s most promising teenager to an unwanted 25-year old heading to Sweden but it does prove the popular sentiment “talent is not enough”.