- Ben Petty assesses the Leicester City Development Squad’s season so far
- City sit ninth in Premier League 2 Division 1 after 13 games in 2021/22
- The coach speaks about adapting to the new system that they are deploying
- Getting players into the first team squad has been a highlight of the campaign, he adds
Postponements mean that, although City are placed ninth in the 14-team division as things stand, winning four out of 13 fixtures, they have up to two games in hand on other sides above them.
Providing his assessment on how the first half of the season panned out, the coach has identified areas of improvement and he is confident that the team can put that into practice more as the season goes on.
“I think we’ve made some steady progress,” he reflected to LCFC.com this week. “The two games that have been postponed probably would have left us with a much more in-depth look at where we were in the grand scheme of the things.
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“We like to think we would have done well in those two games and got to around the 20-point mark, which would have been really satisfactory. Those that have been at the games have seen that we have tried to implement a new style of play, more playing out from the back. It’s always going to take time.
“But with the team being a lot younger as well, I think we will be given time to develop and, if we can get through this season, I think next season you will see the rewards.”
Outlining the aims and targets set for the New Year and the remainder of the campaign, Petty discussed his hope to see more players be ready for first team action following game-time for the likes of Vontae Daley-Campbell and Kasey McAteer, while several others also stepped up into senior matchday squads.
For the Development Squad, meanwhile, he believes it is vital that they get off to a good start in 2022 with a trip to Chelsea up first on Monday 10 January (7pm GMT kick-off)
We’d like to get more players on the pitch in the first team, that’s the ultimately goal, to see if we can get them more experience with the first team.Ben Petty LCFC.com
He continued: “Obviously having a first team debutant in Kasey McAteer has got to be the highlight and lots of lads in and around the first team squad, training and on the bench. So far, so good in that sense.
“We’d like to get more players on the pitch in the first team, that’s the ultimately goal, to see if we can get them more experience with the first team.
"As a group of staff and players, we think it’s imperative that we keep our status in this league. We’ll be doing our utmost to get the performances right and then the results will look after themselves.”
As the Premier League continues through the festive period, there are potentially more chances for Under-23s players to be called up, with Petty and the rest of the coaching staff ensuring that they are fully prepared to make the transition if required.
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“We’re only having a few days off, those that aren’t involved with the first team,” Petty revealed. “Then we’re back Monday as normal and we are at the call of the first team so we need to be ready and the lads need to be fit and raring to go.
“We’re ticking over, we’re not having too much time off. We’ve got a couple of difficult games in January so we’re looking to really hit the ground running when they come around.
“For us to be around the first team more, that’s where we all want to be and I think the lads are seeing that the gap is getting smaller for them. They are getting closer to where they want to get to. When or if they are called up, let's hope they can do a job for the gaffer.”
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