A Dale Carrick double helped Hearts U20s defeat St Johnstone last night, and Jack Ross believes the striker has fired himself into Robbie Neilson’s plans for Saturday.
The Wee Jambos came from behind to win 3-1 against the Perth Saints, with ‘Speedy’ netting either side of a Greg Page header.
U20s Player Development Manager Jack reckons that the striker has set himself up nicely to be part of the first-team’s plans in this weekend’s Championship match against Alloa Athletic.
Speaking exclusively to Hearts News, Jack said: “The likes of Dale played well last night and managed to score two goals, which is important for a striker. They have to continue to score goals in fixtures, no matter what levels they’re playing at.
“What Dale’s done is what players have to do when they find themselves in these games; make sure that when Robbie has a decision to make, they’re the one who is first in his mind.
“Dale’s certainly done himself no harm in that respect because he’s a striker and he’ll be judged on goals. His first goal last night was a really good finish. It showed somebody who is confident enough in front of goal. He was also confident enough to take the penalty thereafter, which shows you the frame of mind he was in. He’ll take self-belief from that as well.
“Although he’s had a season that was slightly interrupted by injury, I think the fact that he’s contributed with goals at first-team level upon his return, and last night’s goals, will stand him in good stead.”
The Wee Jambos notched their third win of the season in last night’s Newtongrange encounter and although Jack was happy to get the victory, he still prefers to look at the bigger picture.
“I’ve said previously when we’ve lost games that it’s getting a balance between trying to encourage a winning mentality within the whole club but equally not getting caught up with results being the be-all and end-all within these games”, he said. “The purpose is development for these young players and preparing the more senior players for returning to the first-team.
“It’s always nice to win football matches. There are still a lot of aspects of the game that we could’ve done better. At times it was okay. It’s another game under the belt of the young players and equally, with having five overage players it’s serving a purpose.”
A full match report can be read on the HYDC website by clicking here.