Under-21s in action on Friday
- Frankie Bunn previews U21 friendly at Radcliffe
- Young Town side expected in Greater Manchester
- Coach looking forward to physical challenge
Huddersfield Town’s Senior Professional Development Coach Frankie Bunn believes Friday night’s Under-21 friendly at Radcliffe Borough will present his players with a good set of challenges to overcome.
The young Terriers take on the Evo-Stik League Division One North side at 7pm on Friday evening in Greater Manchester in the team’s second pre-season friendly; the Development Squad lost 3-2 at Newcastle United behind closed doors last week.
Bunn sees the game as a great way for his players to regain further sharpness ahead of the Professional Development League 2 season, as he explained to htafc.com.
“With it still being very early in pre-season, we’re focussed more on the fitness levels at the minute. We’ll be putting more minutes into the players; although some of them played all 90 at Newcastle last week, the majority played 45. Hopefully we can get 60 minutes out of some on Friday evening and 30 from the others.
“If you ask any of the players, it takes two or three competitive games to get going. Hopefully games like this can help us hit the ground running.
“As always, we expect the boys to go and express themselves on the ball too.”
Bunn will field a young side on Friday evening; William Boyle, Joe Wilkinson, Jack Senior, Sondre Tronstad, Duane Holmes and Jake Charles are on the First Team’s training camp in Spain
whilst Philip Billing (hamstring), Ben Holmes (knee) and Callum Charlton (foot) are nursing injuries.
Frankie continued: “We’ll be a young side, as we’re carrying a few injuries and we have six players who have travelled with the First Team. It’s left us with around five Development Squad players, so we’ll have nine Under-18s travelling, some of which will be first year scholars.
“We’ve proven last year that if they are ready for the level, we’ll play them – regardless of what age they are. Last season we had the likes of Rekeil Pyke, Jack Boyle, Regan Booty and Jacob Hanson all playing as first year scholars.
“It’s testament to the Club that we’re not frightened to throw our youngsters up an age group or two. They will make mistakes and struggle physically at times, but it’s a great experience for them.”
As such, Bunn believes Radcliffe Borough provides the perfect test for the Academy players:
“They’ll be playing up against men, which is another test for them. I’m looking forward to seeing if we can stand up physically to playing against an open age team full of men, because they will be under pressure.
“It will be the first time that some of the first year scholars have played at a stadium too, albeit a small one.
“It’ll be different to the Newcastle game as hopefully we will get more of the ball. Newcastle was a tough test without possession, but we did ok with it and scored two goals away from home.”
for a preview of Friday night's game, including admission prices and directions.