Peter Thomas broke the record for Rochdale’s youngest ever debutant on Wednesday night.
The Rochdale Academy Under-16 player was introduced as a late substitute in Dale’s Leasing.com Trophy tie against Manchester City Under-21s, at the age of just 15 years and 22 days.
The record had previously been held by Luke Matheson, who made his debut in last season’s competition at 15 years and 336 days.
Manager Brian Barry-Murphy said of the forward: “Peter is a very exciting talent.
“He’s got great physical prowess, but a good understanding of the game. He has an exceptional amount of work to achieve the potential he possesses, but he will do because I think he’s a very humble lad, he wants to work hard, and we’re very privileged to have him in our ranks.
“Something I feel really strongly about is to be clear that we’re not a Club that’s fast-tracking players for the sake of it or trying to make any headlines.
“I wasn’t aware that Peter would become the youngest player at the Club, but he’s a player that I’ve watched at different Academy levels for the last two to three years.
“As I’ve said previously, the work that has gone on is through the Academy and they’re the guys that take the praise for it. I don’t profess to have done any work with him really, apart from introducing him to a first-team environment.
“I think it’s what this competition is all about for a Club like ourselves, to be able to introduce him into the environment of senior players who committed to helping those players in an extraordinary manner tonight.”