Taiwanese midfielder Will Donkin signs for Stabæk


Taiwanese midfielder has signed for Norwegian side Stabæk who compete in the top tier of Norwegian football - the Eliteserien. The club is based in the Norwegian capital, Oslo. 

Donkin thinking of his future

Will Donkin (Doughnut Boy, as he is labelled in Taiwan) has been without a club since leaving Crystal Palace at the end of the 2018/19 Premier League season. He decided to leave Crystal Palace as he wanted to find a club who would give him the chance of playing in the senior side.

This is an issue for a lot of young players in England right now. Clubs, especially ones higher up the league pyramid, are less likely to give players from their academy any kind of chance in the senior side.

I have no doubt that Donkin could have signed a new deal with Palace, and just carried on in their youth sides, and reserves like a lot of players do, however, he has instead decided to follow a route taken by the likes of Jadon Sancho.

Am such much of this was down to the realisation hitting home with more English based players, that Europe, right now could offer them a much better pathway to a successful career as a professional footballer.

It takes guts to turn your back on a Premier League club, especially at such a young age. Players who have already gone down this path have shown that the guts it takes to turn down a contract extension.

While this shows an insight into the character behind what has seen a big proportion of these youngsters do well.

Willy Donks obviously is built in the same mould, and I believe getting added game time will simply accelerate his progression. Which will be great for him, and great for the Taiwan national side too.

Can't play until January 

Unfortunately, Donkin cannot play for Stabæk until January, when the registration period re-opens for Norwegian sides, and then he can be registered in their squad.

He has joined the club immediately however in order to train with his new teammates and be fit and ready when the time comes round for him to make his debut. 

The reason he can still sign out of the transfer window is that he is a free agent. If the rules in Norway are the same as in England he would have been able to play as long as the squad list isn't full which makes us believe the rules could be slightly different, or the squad is full.

Stabæk is obviously interested in having him involved mind or they wouldn't have got him in pronto. 

Playing in Scandinavia will definitely give Donkin more opportunities in the first team, and a pathway to becoming a better player that just wasn't on offer in England. This will continue to happen as clubs in England shun youth players, and fail season after season to bring players through from the academies in favour of buying ready made players. 

Will Donkin was signed as a youth player at Chelsea, then moved to Crystal Palace under 18's. While at Crystal Palace, he was called up to the Taiwan national team as he was eligible through his mother. He has since gained 15 caps for Taiwan since making his debut. 

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