We must be patient with youngsters, says Lowestoft Town boss

Lowestoft Town joint boss Micky Chapman insists the Blues management must be patient with the club's youngsters.

A youthful Trawlerboys side hammered Heybridge Swifts in the League Cup on Tuesday night prompting talk among some fans that it could be time to put more trust in the club's youngsters.

However, ahead of the Blues Ryman League clash at home to AFC Hornchurch this afternoon (kick-off 3pm), Chapman insists the likes of Luke Bailey, Connor Doddington and Adam Fitzgerald must not be rushed.

'We've got a small squad and we were always going to mix it up on Tuesday,' said Chapman. 'It was a really good chance to have a look at a few of the young lads and they did really well.

'However, playing in the Ryman Premier is completely different to what they experienced on Tuesday night – it's another level. They probably aren't quite ready for that but that isn't taking anything away from the way they performed.

'It's really promising for the club as a whole and if they keep working hard then they will get their chance in the future.

'We've got some of the lads on contracts, which shows how highly we think of them.'

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Lowestoft face old rivals Hornchurch this afternoon with the Londoners proving something of a bogey side for the Blues in recent seasons.

The Blues lost out to the Urchins them in the play-off final in 2012 and a late penalty earlier this season saw Chapman's men slip to another away defeat.

However, Chapman insists their opponents hold no fears for his side despite the squad being stretched through injury.

'We are low on numbers but hopefully we will have one or two back on Saturday,' he said. 'We felt a bit hard done by at their place when we conceded a soft penalty late on and it would be nice to try and put that right.

'We've got to make sure that we approach the game in the right way. They aren't better than us and it's up to us to show it.'

Lowestoft hope to welcome back Chris Henderson (thigh) and Michael Frew (groin) but Curtis Haynes-Brown (hamstring) is still at least a week away from making his return.

Jake Reed will lead the line once more after showing no ill-effects from the groin injury that troubled him recently.

'Jake's fine - he just felt a bit tight at the end of the match on Saturday,' said Chapman. 'He is still working his way back to full match fitness which is a frightening thought when you consider how well he has played for us so far.'