Manager Tony Mowbray insists young players from Rovers’ Under-23s will be given an opportunity to impress in this season’s Checkatrade Trophy, as the competition develops.
Rovers get their cup campaign underway at home to Stoke City Under-21s tonight (kick-off 7.45pm at Ewood Park), with further group games against Bury and Rochdale to follow.
Damien Johnson’s development squad have started the season in fine style, winning their opening three Premier League 2 games, with striker Joe Nuttall netting six goals, and Mowbray says the club’s promising youngsters will get a chance.
“Young players need to be given an opportunity and sometimes you never know if they are ready until you throw them in,” said the Rovers boss.
“Somewhere down the line, especially in this competition, some of them will be around it and get a game.
“Is it a good experience for them? Yes, because hopefully they’ve got some first team players barking in their ear if they’re not doing their job.
“I live alongside Damien (Johnson) and David (Dunn) every day and all the young lads that are in this building, so I see them every day and I watch them every day.
“They’re doing exceptionally well, they’re playing a system that we’ve worked on and they’ve got players that fit the system pretty well.
“Young (Joe) Nuttall has come into the building and caught fire straight away really and scored a lot of goals, and we’ve obviously got an eye on that situation.
“But all of the players are doing well. The defenders are passing it really well from the back, the midfield players are very competitive, the players out wide are putting balls in the box – they’re doing their jobs and it’s exciting for them.
“I’m pretty sure, as the season unfolds, some young players from the Under-23s will get opportunities, because we’re carrying a pretty tight squad and because they’re doing so well themselves at the moment, and then it’s up to them to take their chance.”
Tickets for tonight's match are priced at just £5 for adults, £2.50 for concessions (65+ and ages 12-17) and free for juniors, when accompanied by a paying adult, up until 6pm.
Thereafter, matchday prices are £10 for adults, £5 for concessions and £2.50 for juniors.