Craig Fleming believes Southampton Under-18s’ upcoming league clash against Reading will provide further valuable experience for his young side.
Saints are set to host the Royals at Staplewood Campus on Saturday morning, in what Fleming anticipates will be a tough physical test.
“It will again be a very young side for us,” the manager explained.
“I don’t think any of the lads that played in the FA Youth Cup will start the game on Saturday. We’ll be a very young side, which is good, to be honest with you.
“It’ll be a tough game for the younger boys; Reading are quite an old and settled side - they are a physical team who are second in the league.
“So it’ll be tough but it’s fantastic for their development. They are going in and getting good minutes against a very good side early in their scholarship.”
Saints suffered a 2-0 defeat to West Ham in their previous league outing, despite putting in a good performance away at Little Heath.
And Fleming is hopeful his side will continue to learn from such experiences.
“They are young lads and they are going to make mistakes,” he continued.
“The important thing is that we learn from it and try not to do it again. On the whole, this season, I think they’ve done that.
“The lads are really starting to learn and come up to the level now. We saw that against West Ham where they really held their own.”