ACADEMY coach Kevin Thomson was pleased with how the Under-18’s adapted to the challenge of a different formation against Fleetwood Town this afternoon.
The Young Gers came up against a diamond formation, one which Thomson admits they are not used to.
He said: “It was a good test for the boys it was a wee bit different, to be fair to Fleetwood they were very good and played a different formation that the boys have not been quite used to.
“They played a diamond so it was a wee bit of a challenge to start with and obviously our team was a bit put together with a few trialists so not having done too much work playing against a diamond it was a wee bit of a challenge for us but effectively that’s what we want.
“I think when we worked it out we became more fluent. I’m not sure we were worthy winners it was quite tight and could have went either way but ultimately it was a good test and that’s what we want for pre-season.”
Thomson was happy to see the side keep a clean sheet and hopes it can also spur on players who are not in the side at the moment.
He added: “I think when it becomes a habit to keep a clean sheet and having that resilience to see out games to continue to get clean sheets and it will give them that confidence at the back and I think it is great for everybody.
“It also puts that challenge for the players that are sitting on the bench knowing that the boys are doing their jobs very well and that they have to fight harder to try and get back in the team and that is the environment we want to try and create.
“When the boys are playing very well it’s up to the ones that are not in it to come on and make an impact to try and force their way into the team and I think if we can create that environment and that challenge for them individually and as a team then it can only help us.”
With five trialists among the squad for the friendly, Thomson said the players deserved credit for working with the changes.
“We try and ask our boys to have a bit of ownership over that during set plays and the things that our boys do day to day.
“You are bringing boys from all different cultures and different countries to then try and mould that into them within 24 hours is difficult but good credit to the boys that are already in the building because we try and give them a lot of ownership and put demands on them to try and show them what we do at this club and I have to say the boys are great at that to be fair to them.”