Professional development phase coach Frank Sinclair has praised his side’s ability to challenge against a physical Huddersfield Town side in their recent 1-1 draw.
Harry Wood gave Rovers U18s the lead at the Hoober Homes Elite Performance Centre before the Terriers equalised shortly after as the hosts settle for their first EFL Youth Alliance League point of the season.
Having made their first mark in the points column, the youth team manager was impressed by the performance levels throughout their first home game.
“We’re really pleased with the performance,” Sinclair said. “Again we expected to face a very good Huddersfield side and I thought we played well, especially in the first half.
“We more than held our own in the first half and then we tweaked things a little bit with the formation and the roles that each player had to play.
“I thought the result was probably fair and I think both sides will be thinking that they had chances to win the game but, at the same time, pleased to not get beat.
“When you consider the personnel that we had available on the day with an U16s goalkeeper and four on the bench also from that group, it was a great experience for them.
“They all challenged physically and they all came through the game with some real credit so I’m really pleased with that.”
Despite taking the lead after two minutes at Cantley Park, Huddersfield drew level on the fourth but Sinclair was confident his players would learn from their mistakes.
He added: “We could’ve maybe done with a bit of time for the game to settle again after we took the lead so that we could’ve had a bit more time on the ball and created more opportunities - but obviously they scored straight away.
“It was quite disappointing really with the goal because three of our lads have gone to ground to try and make the tackle and the same player went and scored the goal.
“We talk a lot about staying on your feet and giving the opposition the problem of trying to beat you but we just went down too easily.
“That’s going to be a learning curve now for those players because they’ll look back at it and know what needs to be done to be better.
“We had the chances to win the game in the second half, and so did they, but I was really pleased with how we finished the game because we had five U16s on the pitch and we still competed really well.
“There’s some really good signs there and it’s good to see our younger players really holding their own.
“We’ve got off the mark now and that’s good because it’ll give the lads some more confidence now and that’ll be useful for the next game.”