David Flitcroft has stressed the importance of developing young and hungry talent at Mansfield Town.
He was speaking in support of a new EFL initiative requiring club’s to include home grown talent each week in their matchday squad.
Youngsters Jordan Graham and Lewis Gibbens were named in the Stags squad to face Newport, with Flitcroft keen to stress they are not just there to make up the numbers.
“Developing players is key. I look at my career and I had five or six years with Keith Hill as an assistant manager who was highly passionate about developing young players,” he said.
“Young players give you a sincerity and an honesty. I didn’t want to put a player on that didn’t deserve to come on, to just tick a box.
“If you look at the England team and the way that they performed. A lot of that team have come from the EFL. I think there’s too much emphasis on the Premier League. Our EFL is really strong. Probably 90% of that England squad who performed so well at the World Cup have spent time in there or come from there.
“I’m delighted that Jordan [Graham] has had some game time. Would I be worried about putting Lewis Gibbens on? No chance. I’d put him on at the drop of a hat.”