Manager Keith Hill spoke to Dale Player following Tuesday night’s friendly match against Bolton Wanderers at Spotland.
The Wanderers were 2-0 winners, but Hill was encouraged with the performance of his young side.
“The game was really encouraging from my perspective when you look at the young players that were playing,” said Hill. “It’s games like these that they can earn their stripes and it gives me a lot of thoughts going into the season.
“I’m really pleased with the work out and if you look at the line-up for Bolton, arguably it’s their starting line-up, and the same can be said with respect to my line-up. I’ve got no fear of playing these young players and they won’t let me down.
“Johny Diba, who’s 16, was in goal, and I was really pleased with his contribution. Like I said, I’m really encouraged with the performance tonight.”
He continued: “I’m not really concerned about results. I do believe that we created chances, although probably not in the first half. I think there was a little bit of a misunderstanding from some about what it was that was expected from the younger players but we tried to solve that at half time and I think we grew into the game, definitely.
“For me, Bolton’s goals could have been avoided, but they are the teething problems that you’ve got an opportunity to sort out going into the new campaign. These are what the pre-season games are for, as well as to have a look at what I consider to be our outstanding young players.”
The full interview is available to view on Dale Player.