Wednesday 29 Jun
Updated Wednesday 29 Jun 15:00
Development Squad

Dobson makes Saddlers loan switch

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  • Midfielder George Dobson joins Walsall on season-long loan
  • The League One side finished third in League One last season
  • Dobson was a key player for the Development Squad last campaign
Young West Ham midfielder George Dobson has joined League One outfit Walsall on a season-long loan.
 
The 18-year-old, who joined the Hammers from north London Club Arsenal last summer, made 21 appearances for the Development Squad last season, playing a major role as they won the U21 Premier League Cup.
 
The youngster, who is a West Ham supporter, was also named on the first team substitutes’ bench for March Premier League wins over Tottenham Hotspur and Everton last season.
 
He captained Arsenal’s U18s before making the switch to east London last year and will hope to make an impression for the Saddlers, who finished third in League One last season.
 
After completing the move, Dobson said: “I can’t wait to get started. It’s a massive opportunity for me and one I’m really excited about and I just hope I can get as many games under my belt as possible.
Playing in League One is a big step up, but one I’m confident I can adapt to. Last season Walsall finished third, so you can see the ambition and the talent is there.
“Playing in League One is a big step up, but one I’m confident I can adapt to. Last season Walsall finished third, so you can see the ambition and the talent is there.
 
“I had a full season with the U21s last season which was very good, I enjoyed it a lot and now I feel ready for the next step. My plan was to go out on loan at some point this year, I just didn’t know when. Now it’s happened, I can’t wait to get started.”
 
Dobson watched on as teammates Reece Burke and Josh Cullen impressed on loan at Bradford City in the same division last season, and he admitted he would love to emulate their success.
 
“Last season, Reece and Josh did brilliantly on loan at Bradford and if I do anywhere near as well then I’ll be happy. Reece won seven awards so that’ll be pretty difficult, but I’m confident in my ability that I can do well.
 
“Hopefully I can make my professional debut sooner rather than later but I know I need to work hard to earn it.
 
“I’m excited to meet up with the staff and players, and get stuck in at a new environment and a new culture. “
 
As Terry Westley’s Development Squad reached the U21 Premier League Cup final against Hull City last campaign, Dobson played in all four of the ties, dictating play and impressing from the centre of the park.
 
However, after featuring in the final first leg against the Tigers at the Boleyn Ground, Dobson was forced to watch his teammates lift the trophy after a penalty shootout victory from the stands, after injury had ruled him out of the clash.
 
Dobson also played seven times for the Club’s U18s last season, scoring once in an early season tie against London rivals Fulham.