BOSS Sean Dyche feels the future’s bright, the future’s Claret!
Dyche was disappointed to see his side go down to a first defeat in four games at former club Nottingham Forest on Saturday.
But the night before, he was in attendance to see Terry Pashley’s yong charges win an incredible FA Youth Cup third round tie against Manchester United at Old Trafford, coming through 4-3 after extra time, courtesy of a hat-trick from Jason Gilchrist.
And on the back of the run to the semi-finals of the same competition last season, Dyche is hugely encouraged by the quality youngsters emerging through the ranks at Turf Moor.
Dyche’s background at Watford was in youth development, before progressing to assistant manager and then manager at Vicarage Road, and he firmly believes in bringing through your own players.
He said: “There are several good signs at the club at the moment, and that’s what I’m focussing on.
“Three points on a Saturday or a Tuesday is the main thing for me as the manager, but we are focussing on putting things in place behind that to support that, and there were some great signs on Friday.
“It was absolutely fantastic, I was there myself and I couldn’t take my eyes off it.
“To play how they did, the manner, the good play, the energy, the commitment - it’s part of what we’re building here as a football club.
“I spoke to Pash afterwards and said what we try and get into the first team, it always drips down, and the belief they showed, the work ethic and commitment to the cause and club was fantastic.
“It’s not an easy ask to go to Manchester United at any level, and at that level they have some very good players, but some of out boys more than matched them, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
“I went into the dressing room afterwards and congratulated them.
“It’s not just about the first team at this club - there’s more than that going on behind the scenes, we’re putting things in place that we believe are important going forward.
“I’m delighted for Pash, his staff and his players, the parents and the fans who travelled - and Sir Alex was very gracious afterwards and commended us on our good players.”
Dyche has already taken a look at some of the blossoming young talent at the club in training, involving some of the development squad with the first team, and he added: “Like anything, it’s time appropriate with young players - when do you put them in and give them a chance?
“Some of them have already trained with the first team, and I definitely believe in exposing them to the first team - it’s very important to get a feel for what it is like, tempo, the demands, the way they go about it.
“Part of it is the transition into the first team – it’s important they have a pathway into the first team, they understand the culture of the first team and also the technical and tactical and the physical demands of it. That’s a big part of their development.
“There were only three second years in the side on Friday, one under 16, and three subs under 16 - if that’s not an advert for good things coming through...
“One swallow doesn’t make a summer obviously, but to go to Old Trafford, deal with the occasion - Gilly (Jason Gilchrist) got a hat-trick, fantastic, he won’t forget that.
“Cammy Howieson played a captain’s role, and to respond to going behind - one of the things we’re trying to build is the ability to respond to setbacks, and we didn’t quite do that as a first team on Saturday, but we certainly did it on Friday and I can’t congratulate them enough, they were fantastic.”