A few weeks ago Tom Killick was stressing about the size of his threadbare squad, with injuries and suspensions leaving Poole with very few options in terms of depth.
Fast forward to now, and Killick is a lot more confident – after witnessing the performances of the younger players at his disposal first hand.
But despite being impressed with Poole’s U23s, Killick admitted it would be unlikely for multiple players to get a chance in his promotion seeking side, quoting heightened expectations as a restriction.
Speaking to All Poole Aren’t We, Killick explained: “We’ll have to see. At the moment, numbers wise, we’re not too bad. But looking at some of the performances of those lads against Wimborne, if we are short on numbers going forward, I wouldn’t hesitate to bring some of these lads into the group.
“The difficulty is that if our expectation was to stay in the league, or finish half way up the league, then perhaps we’d get a little more opportunities to take risks with young players, and give them a bit of time to develop, whilst still playing.
“But, it’s more difficult when you’re having to be a bit more cut-throat about what you’re trying to achieve.”
Despite the pressures of the job, Killick has still managed to utilise Poole’s youth system in the past – with Marvin Brooks, Will Spetch, Josh Leslie-Smith and Jack Dickson all going on to make an impact in the first team.
Killick continued: “I wouldn’t say that’s been a disappointment in all my time at the club, but because pretty much every season other than our second season in the Conference South, I don’t think we’ve had a season since I’ve been here when we haven’t been fighting for promotion.
“That’s the one thing that does make it difficult to blood young players, whereas the Wimbornes and the Dorchesters are sort of able to do that more regularly, because – I don’t know why – the expectations are different.”