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Stancliffe praises young side

26 March 2018

Paul Stancliffe praised his side’s resilience as they beat local rivals Rotherham United 1-0 in the South Yorkshire derby.

The U18s boss thought his side thoroughly deserved the victory after their battling performance, and says he was impressed with his relatively young side.

He said: “All victories are usually pleasing, but this was hard-fought, we expected to come under pressure from Rotherham, but I thought we stood up to it really well, especially as we had a younger team.

“The system was something we had played before, we felt that with the injuries and lads we’ve got out it was the best way to go and to be fair Ben Blythe’s come in, U16, he’s a centre-half who’s coming in next season, he’s the only centre-half we’ve got who’s fit so we just felt that was the best way to go.

“Branden’s not a centre-back, although he can play there, but he’s played on the right and he’s a left-footer. Jacob’s a left-footed player, Ben’s a left-footed player, so we’ve had that unbalance if you like but I thought the back three were outstanding today nonetheless.”

Stancliffe, who has one eye on next season, has told his players to set themselves targets in the closing stages of the season and praised the attitude of his team.

He added: “I said to the lads in the changing rooms before today’s game, they should be setting themselves targets, if we can keep that going, it will look quite promising for next season honestly.

“To be fair you’re never quite sure with young players, how they’re going to be on the day and how they’ll react but they’re a great bunch and they work ever so hard.

“They listen to what’s asked of them and they try to put it into practice and that’s all you can ask for from young players – these guys do it. Yes, they make mistakes. Yes, we get frustrated on the side, but we think their heading in the right direction which is the main thing.”

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