MATCH PREVIEW: Look out League One! Leo has found his scoring boots
Leo Da Silva Lopes burst onto the Posh scene by scoring a spectacular goal in an FA Youth Cup tie at the age of 15.
The opponents at London Road that night were Notts County and young Leo - four days after his 18th birthday - haunted them again in a more prestigious FA competition last weekend (December 4).
This time the 25 yard strike in the third minute of an FA Cup tie didn’t lead to a Posh victory, but it’s given the teenager a thirst for more goals to complement his impressive midfield performances.
Da Silva Lopes has racked up 32 appearances so far this season, a terrific effort for one so young, even if he is a firm favourite of manager Grant McCann.
His other first-team goal was also a stunning effort from distance against Swansea in an English Football League Cup tie earlier this campaign.
“I should definitely score more goals,” Da Silva Lopes admitted. “I scored lots in youth team football so it is a part of my game I need to improve now I’m in the first-team squad. I’m sure more goals will come.
“The season has gone well for me so far. I’ve started many more matches than I expected I would.
“I started pre-season well though and that gave me the confidence to feel I belonged with the first team.
“It was disappointing not to hold on and beat Notts County, but we’ve got to forget that and make sure we beat Chesterfield now.
“It will be a tough game though. They lost 5-0 last weekend so they will be desperate to get a reaction so we have to make sure we have the right mindset.”
With attention comes transfer speculation for young players, but Da Silva Lopes is very single-minded about his career.
“I try not to let speculation affect me,” he added. “I can’t influence it so I just get my head down and try and make sure I work hard enough in training to impress my manager.”
And manager McCann knows Posh have unearthed another gem.
“Leo is going to be a top, top player for this club,” McCann insisted. “He’s still striving for the consistency all young players struggle to find, but he has been outstanding for us.
“Getting into more attacking positions and scoring is one of the things we’ve asked him to do so his goal at Notts County was very pleasing.”