Simon Grayson has admitted he’s been impressed with what he’s seen from Blackpool’s highly-rated young striker Ewan Bange.
The 17-year-old was handed his competitive debut for the Seasiders off the bench in last week’s EFL Trophy defeat at Carlisle United.
The tall striker even had a chance to score, shooting straight at the goalkeeper after being sent through on goal.
It comes after Bange, who has been training with the first team in recent weeks, scored three goals in two games for the reserves.
Grayson says he’s been left happy by what he’s seen of the striker.
“We wanted to give him that opportunity (in the EFL Trophy),” he told The Gazette.
“The easiest thing to do was to give one of the more experienced players a go and go to another system.
“But we wanted to see what he was capable of doing and I thought he held the ball up well.
“For the chance, the ball just got stuck under his feet and one of his big attributes is his finishing.
“But it was good for him to get in that position and it was good for him to get some game time, I’m just slightly disappointed he didn’t score on his debut.”
Bange’s display at Brunton Park was a rare positive in what was another disappointing night at the office for Grayson’s men.
The Seasiders, who produced an abject display against the Cumbrians, wasted a one-goal lead to lose their second group game after conceding the winner three minutes from time.
While the EFL Trophy is not a priority for Blackpool, the performance still left Grayson furious at full-time.
The Pool boss added: “I said to the players before the game, we’ve got another football match that we want to win.
“But I’ve just questioned the players in the dressing room, how many of them have played at Wembley? There’s not many of them.
“Why not go to Wembley and have a day out?
“People might class this tournament as a distraction or whatever, but we’ve still got a lot of first-team players that should have been capable of winning a football match had their attitude been right and the characteristics were right to go and perform.
“There wasn’t enough of that.
“There were a couple of positives but, collectively, there were too many bad individual mistakes and too many bad performances.”