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Development Squad

Full credit to the young lads

26 September 2017

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Damien Johnson was full of praise for his young side after they brushed aside Fulham 4-0 on Monday night.

First half goals from Callum Wright and Joe Nuttall, were added to in the second by Joe Rankin-Costello and Lewis Mansell, as the development squad continued their fine start to the season wth a comfortable victory at the County Ground.

Injuries and suspensions meant it was a much changed side on show at Leyland, with first starts at Under-23 level for Academy regulars Ben Paton and John Buckley. Whilst Jack Evans and 16-year-old Jack Vale stepped off the bench in the closing stages to complete a pleasing night for the coach.

"We talked about playing at a good intensity," said Johnson.

"We know they are a good footballing side if they are allowed to play and we talked about unsettling them and playing on the front foot and make opportunities to take the ball off them and break quickly and I thought we did that.

"I have to give credit to the young lads who came in tonight because we were young, as young as we've been.

"They all stepped up. Callum (Wright) scored a terrific goal, Ben Paton is not a left back but he just showed that he could adapt and looked like he was a regular left back.

"Young John Buckley was terrific in the middle of the park, and it was great at the end Jack Vale, a 16 year-old, came off the bench. So it was terrific.

"But that is what it is all about for us, we have to keep pushing the young lads on.

"For the senior lads, the Matty Platts, the Joe Nuttalls, the Andrew Fishers, and Joe Rankin-Costello - who again was terrific - they've set their standards and they've just got to keep going. That is what we want from them week in, week out.

"Individually they know the demands and what is expected. I'm delighted with the goals, I'm equally delighted with the clean sheet."

The Under-23s are now back in action on Monday October 9th when they entertain Cardiff City in their opening Premier League Cup group match.

Kick-off at the County Ground, Leyland is at 7.00pm. Season ticket holders can see the match for free on production of their season ticket card. General admission prices are £3 adults, £1 concessions.

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