Gaffer talks about the youth team and plans for the futureShrewsbury Town Manager Paul Hurst is hoping that a new generation of young talent isn’t far away.
The Town boss has been taking a look at the youth team both in training and matches over recent weeks and has been impressed with what he has seen.
The Under-18s are set to take on Accrington Stanley in the 3rd Round of the FA Youth Cup next Tuesday night and Hurst is hopeful that some of the players involved can develop into professional footballers.
“I’ve been impressed with the standard of players and the training,” Paul told ShrewsWeb.
“I’m a little surprised looking at results that they haven’t done better. It doesn’t matter about getting results because a lot of it is about getting them to progress as individuals and getting some to come through to turn professional, but at the same time I’m a big believer that players shouldn’t like losing from a very early age.
“I was a bad loser. I once changed teams and we played against one of my old teams and we lost and I was inconsolable for that day, so I do think there is still an element of getting into good habits, particularly at 16, 17, 18 years old.
“You don’t want to let losing become something that’s taken lightly, because ultimately when they do step up and they are in the first team dressing room it certainly does matter, so we can’t hide the fact we’re not happy with losing games, but at the same time it is very much about developing them.”
Paul is hoping to take a closer look at the youth team squad over the coming months and admits that the long term aim is to have them training at the new training ground on a regular basis, in order to get a better understanding of the players as people.
“I’ve seen them a couple of times already in training and in the last youth cup game and I was impressed with quite a bit of what I saw,” said Paul.
“I’ve had a chat with Matt Rains and we’ve spoken about changing one or two things in terms of how we set up and how we progress, that will hopefully give some of the lads a better chance of impressing and we’ll get some of them involved in training as we go along.
“For me, the youth team is a big part of the football club. I’ve said before about wanting to get to the training ground so I see them on a more regular basis.
“At the minute it’s very intermittent and you feel like you’re starting to get to know some of the names and then you see them again and you’re asking ‘who’s he?’, so I want to get to the training ground because you see other things away from the pitch as well and I’m a big believer in trying to help mould people.
“They certainly haven’t made it yet and if there’s any attitudes of egos flying about, that needs to be addressed at an early point, because ultimately if they don’t make it and they go out into the big wide world they will have absolutely no chance.
“I would like to get the basics in place such as manners and work ethic. At the minute it’s all away from my eyes and it would be nice to have a closer approach on that.”