Youngster Set For European Championship Qualifiers
Youth team forward Rowan Roache has reported for international duty with the Republic of Ireland Under-17s.
The 16-year-old, who has been in fine form for Ciaran Donnelly's side this season, is set to feature in a European Championship qualifying tournament against Andorra, Kazakhstan and Greece.
"It's terrific for Rowan, it's the first time we've had that issue with one of our youth team players regularly going away on international duty," Donnelly explained.
"He's going away to play in European Championship qualifiers, which is a fantastic experience for him and it's one that he'll relish given the kind of character he is."
Roache featured once again as the youth team beat Rochdale 2-0 at the weekend, and Donnelly is now looking for someone to take the mantle in his absence.
"Rowan will be missing next week and the challenge will be there for somebody to step forward and take the responsibility of being one of the main players who performs outstandingly well.
"We've had two or three do that in Christian N'Guessan's absence this week, so hopefully we have two or three others step forward against Walsall next week."
The victory against Rochdale on Saturday extended the youth team's unbeaten run to eight matches, and saw them top the North West Youth Alliance table. Overall performances take priority at this stage of the season, though.
"Of course we look at the league table, we have a group of players that want to win the league and be successful. But it's about the performances of the players and me being able to go to the manager and tell him that I've got players for him who are potentially going to be good enough to go through to the first-team," Donnelly added.