Reds Under 21s Coach Paul Heckingbottom saw his side progress into the next round of the Under 21 Premier League Cup last night.
The youngsters overcame Leeds United 4-3 after extra time under the Oakwell floodlights.
Speaking to barnsleyfc.co.uk, Heckingbottom said, “Winning gives the Under 21s lads that played and those who couldn’t play for the first team an opportunity for some game-time,” he said. “It’s a good incentive and a good experience for the youngsters to play inside a proper stadium. We’ve had a couple of night games under floodlights, it’s part of being a pro footballer and it gives the lads the experience rather than just on a training ground.”
Dale Jennings, Jason Scotland and Lewin Nyatanga (2) bagged the goals to edge a seven-goal thriller.
“I think the system (Under 21s) could be better,” he continued. “First-team managers use it as an opportunity to give first-team players game-time, that can sometimes be at the expense of a young pro or an under 18 so you have to be careful. But you can’t put a price on playing alongside experienced pros –picking up bits and pieces - and playing against them.”
Next up in the cup competition is a trip to Bolton Wanderers, who are a ‘Category One’ club.
“Bolton have plenty of resources ploughed into youth development, so it’ll be a good opportunity to play against another category one team,” added Heckingbottom.
Pictured above: Trialist Wato.