Taylor Gardner-Hickman is enjoying a breakthrough season at West Bromwich Albion, getting promoted from the U23s to become a regular under Valerien Ismael. The 20-year-old has operated in defence and midfield with great success, so his future looks bright at the Hawthorns.

Gardner-Hickman signed a new contract at the end of December and recently praised his teammates for how welcoming they’ve been. Ismael showered the 20-year-old in praise too and says Gardner-Hickman will get more playing time moving forward. Fans on social media love to see it.

Lisa Baker: “Class player with a bright future ahead of him. The rewards will come.”

Laurah Wba: “I think he is great.”

Andy Matejic: “Great to see home grown academy players making it to the 1st team. All the best.”

Jack Clarke: “Looks the kind of player we need. This type of player has been missing for too long.”

Brian William Tolley: “You’re very highly thought of. Your chance to become a legend.”

Ian Wormington: “Good lad with a sensible head on his shoulders.”

Liam Ricks: “Such a young lad and our most consistent performer!”

Rob Anderson: “Excellent player. Got a good football brain too.”

Gardner-Hickman scored three goals with four assists from 30 games for the U18s and scored six goals with four assists from 32 games for the U23s. He’s made eight appearances in the first-team and has consistently been in the matchday squad since mid-October.

The 20-year-old has played at right-back, central midfield, left-wing and on the right-wing without an issue, so Ismael is blessed with a versatile talent. Gardner-Hickman has started four of West Brom’s last six games across the board, so he could make the starting eleven against Queens Park Rangers on Saturday.

In other news, Kevin Phillips says ‘fresh’ Daryl Dike could boost West Brom’s promotion hopes