Darren Sarll praised the club’s youth team players for their performances in Yeovil Town‘s 4-1 win over Bridgwater United in the Somerset Premier Cup first round on Wednesday night.
The Glovers’ boss singled out defender Jake Graziano, midfielder Ollie Haste and strike Finlay Skiverton who all featured in a strong side which included a number of first-team players.
The trio are all regulars in the club’s Under-18s side which works in partnership with Yeovil College delivering an Elite Player Development Programme.
Sarll said: “I was really pleased with the boys who came out of the college programme.
“Ollie Haste I thought was magnificent, talk about standing up to the opportunity.
In terms of the experience I was able to give him, he will remember that for the rest of his life and the same with young Jake Graziano, they coped brilliantly.
“Obviously Fin came on and scored (the game’s fourth goal) and as soon as the game was out of sight I wanted to give as many of them an opportunity.”
The boss described Skiverton’s goal as “a wonderful moment” for his father, assistant manager and club legend, Terry, but insisted the young striker was in the side on merit alone.
He said: “I can tell everyone now that no-one gets a game because of their surname, they get a game because they can help us win and (Finlay) certainly helped us do that.
“I think he had the two best chances of the game in the last 15 minutes and you have to credit someone for knowing how to get there.
“I was not too impressed with how he knows where to be out of possession but for a centre forward that needs to be the last detail rather than the first.”
There was also some valuable game time for first-team squad members including defender Morgan Williams, midfielder Matt Worthington, who is available after a three-match ban for his red card against King’s Lynn on the opening day, and Alex Bradley who has been out through illness.
Sarll said: “I thought it was important that we got some minutes in to some legs. Morgan (Williams) has played one 90 minute game in eight months, I wanted to get Max (Hunt) back out there.
“Because of how small the squad is, the opportunity to practice in training is reduced because we do not have the numbers, so I thought that was a better environment for Max to carry on practicing.
“Max Evans deserved a game, Adi (Yussuf), Sonny (Blu Lo-Everton) both needed minutes, as did (Matt) Worthington after his suspension and (Alex) Bradley after missing out through illness.
“So it was enjoyable to see what they can contribute and what they could contribute on Saturday and after that.”