King’s Lynn Town boss Gary Setchell wants loanee Jack Friend to turn it on at home


Jack Friend. Picture: MICHAEL SEDGWICK/FOCUS IMAGES - Credit: Michael Sedgwick/Focus Images

Gary Setchell is urging Jack Friend to start delivering the goods on King's Lynn Town's own turf.

The Wisbech-based 19-year-old has shown plenty of promise since joining the Linnets on a season-long loan from League One side Peterborough United in September 2015. However, those occasions have been too few and bar between, especially at home, with Friend restricted to 14 cameos off the bench from a total of 25 appearances.

It appears that the left-footed wideman will get another Walks chance at home against Weymouth this afternoon after starring in Saturday's 4-2 win at Biggleswade Town. And Setchell is desperate for the teenager to turn it on in front of the Linnets faithful.

Lynn's boss said: 'To be fair, Jack and Toby (Hilliard) have earned themselves a start again today. Jack's been unfortunate as he's had a handful of excellent games for us but they've been away from home.

'By his own admission he hasn't produced the same at The Walks. And without being too harsh he has sometimes looked like a boy playing man's football. But when he's been excellent he really has been and hopefully he can produce that today.'

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Friend and Hilliard, who scored during the win at Biggleswade, are just two of Setchell's many young talents that have displayed flashes of quality during their maiden Southern League Premier Division campaigns.

Much is expected of both but their manager remains quick to remind supporters that their patience is still required to help the highly-rated duo, and the club's other youngsters, progress.

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'On the training pitch Jack has been brilliant,' said Setchell.

'He was outstanding at St Neots, came on and scored at Stratford and he certainly was excellent again at Biggleswade. Jack's still only 19 though. There's a lot of reserve lads who get rave reviews, especially the younger ones when they do well, but Jack is also learning his trade. He's just learning it at first-team level. People shouldn't forget that. Hopefully today he'll play like he did last week and will show his true colours.'

A play-off place now looks out of reach for Lynn, ninth, but they can dent sixth-placed Weymouth's hopes of reaching the top five if they record a victory this afternoon.

Setchell, who wants his men to finish the term on a high, will be without Sam Gaughran (ankle) and has injury concerns over Matty Castellan (ankle) and Lee Smith (50/50).

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