Bristol Rovers’ new Head of Youth Darren Patterson cannot wait to get started in his new role and is hoping to install a winning mentality in his youngsters.
Patterson agreed his contract at the Memorial Stadium earlier this month and is looking forward to the challenge, but insists that producing players for the first team is his top priority.
He told the Club’s official website:
“I am very excited to have got things sorted and am looking forward to getting cracking. It is fresh for everybody, and it is a big challenge for everybody, not only the staff but the players as well.”
“It is a challenge we are all excited about, we all want to get some proper kids through and get them into the first team.”
Patterson’s appointment at the Club coincides with the Pirates coming back onto the ASE programme this season.
The new intake of youngsters will complete their two-year Apprenticeship under his charge.
The former Oxford United boss will be overseeing the youth players from age 8 to 18, a big task, but he will not be on his own.
“I will be working very closely with Stewart Naughton who does the Centre of Excellence, but obviously straight away I will be focussing on the Under 18s and working with them for the first few months, getting my own house in order.”
“It is not ideal that these players were brought in before me. I have seen them once and met them once to go through a close season programme.”
“The first month will be fantastic for them as they get to train with the pros, so we wanted to make sure they were fit and strong enough to be able to handle it.”
“I am really looking forward to working with them, if they are dedicated and show a lot of desire, I am sure with the ability they have got they will have a good chance of becoming pros.”