Barnet’s Development coach reflects on how his players are dealing with the step up from the youth team.Development Squad coach Ross Eames spoke to barnetfc.com this morning, to give Bees fans an update on his team’s progress this season.
Discussing the campaign so far, Ross said:
“It’s been a work in progress.
“The aim with this group of players is to bridge the gap from the youth team to the first team.
“It’s a gap that won’t always test the players technically and tactically – it’ll be more mental and physical.
“The boys are on the right path.
“The whole group are doing well as a collective, and there have been a number of first team debuts this year – that’s excellent in terms of a pathway for the players.
“They’re really beginning to realise how physically demanding the step up to the first team is, and they need to be up to speed with that.
“The speed of the game is faster, as is the speed of thought from the opposition and your teammates.
“Mentally you’ve got to be at your best at all times, especially in training.”
“These players are now young professionals; individually they’ve got to develop themselves into men.
“Some will develop faster than others, some will be a little bit slower.
“But it’s about pushing that boundary.
“They need to realise what it’s going to take to get up to first team speed.
“We’ve been playing regular games against professional and semi-professional sides home and away this season.
“In Under 18’s games they were just playing against players who were a year older or a year younger – now there could be a five or ten year gap.
“So how they deal with that is massive, especially in the mental sense.
“It can be tough for youngsters playing against people who’ve already had so much experience in the game.
“Whereas it may have been easier playing for the youth team in the past, it won’t be so easy now.
“If we can keep building and keep them progressing, it’s going to be massive for this group of players.”
Ross also provided an update on the Bees players out on loan at the moment, saying:
“I speak regularly to the managers of the clubs where our players are out on loan.
“They send me feedback, I get the reports, and I also get feedback from the players themselves.
“Joe Gater and Harry Taylor are on loan at Cheshunt and Hampton & Richmond at the moment.
“Shane Cojocarel is on loan at Billericay Town.
“I’ve had really good feedback from their managers in terms of how well they’re doing.
“So I’m in regular contact and the manager asks for updates every week – just to make sure that their development is progressing.”