Preston North End first team coach, David Unsworth has expressed his delight with the way the senior pros helped the younger players through to a victory over Morecambe in Monday night’s Lancashire Senior Cup.
Unsworth took charge of a mixed team of experienced first teamers, young pros and youth team players and they kept a clean sheet and set up a semi-final with Blackpool later this season.
“It was a good night all round,” said Unsworth. “I thought the senior boys applied themselves fantastically and that is great credit to themselves. They put a shift in and it is all about getting 90 minutes under their belt for them, but the application to it was spot on and they were total pros.”
“They were also talking and helping the young lads, which is fantastic. It is something Jamie and I can’t do from the sidelines, but it was fantastic for them to do that as well. We were all delighted with everybody tonight.”
“It will benefit the young lads having four or five senior pros who need a game every other week, or whatever the gaffer decides he wants to do, because they are good pros.”
“They too had an experienced team, but we expect our young boys to compete against these sorts of teams and these sorts of lads, because they are good players and when you have good players you expect good things off them.”
“You can see as the season has progressed they have grown in confidence and now we are seeing decent performances – what was potential is now a growth in confidence and we are delighted in them.”
One player who impressed on the night was Jamie Proctor. The Preston-born forward set up the opening goal with a jinking run through four Shrimps defenders and worked hard all night.
“Since the turn of the new year Jamie Proctor has just got better and better,” added Unsworth. “He nearly didn’t play tonight; he had an awful black eye.”
“He was smashed in training by one of his own players the other day and his eye has only really started to open up from Monday night really, so it was touch and go that he would play, but we were delighted that he did because he put in a tremendous performance.”
“He has shown a lot of maturity with his fitness and his pace and he is starting to show the potential that we saw at the start of the season, so we are delighted for him.”
“Scott Davidson also showed a lot of composure and he did really well for the second goal. He has been a little unfortunate that he has not had as many reserve games as he would like, but it is all about taking your opportunity and he scored a great goal.”