DARREN Manning stresses it is important for Hullbridge Sports youngsters to work their way through the system and stamp a claim for a place in the first team.

A host of talented teenagers were involved in Sports’ 1-0 Isthmian League Cup defeat to neighbours Great Wakering Rovers on Tuesday.

And Manning feels it is important to show those coming through the ranks that there is a pathway into his Isthmian North side.

The Hullbridge boss said: “The youngsters were fantastic and all have bright futures ahead of them.

“They were happy to be involved and showed glimpses of what they can do.

“I think they enjoy playing for Hullbridge and that is very important.

“We haven’t got a big budget so we need to have youngsters coming through the ranks and wanting to play for us rather than go elsewhere.”

The likes of Callum Fitzer, who shone after coming off the bench in the 1-1 draw with Basildon United at the weekend, were handed their full debut for Hullbridge in the dead-rubber with Wakering.

Dan Gilchrist and Shaye La-Rose also made their Sports bow following moves to the Ryan’s Heating Stadium earlier this month.

However, Hullbridge could not end their inclusion in the Isthmian League Cup for the first time in the club’s history on a high as they were beaten by Steve Butterworth’s Wakering at Burroughs Park.

Wakering played the majority of the contest with 10 men as Adalberto Pinto was given his marching orders four minutes before half-time after being shown a second yellow card.

However, the home side emerged victorious thanks to the returning Billy Johnson coming off the bench and claiming the only goal of the contest with 86 minutes on the clock.

But Manning remained positive with Hullbridge’s performance.

“We were extremely good and, overall, we played very well,” added Manning.

“The match gave me an opportunity to hand some youngsters their full debut, while Dan Gilchrist and Shaye La-Rose were also involved in a Hullbridge shirt for the first time as they came off the bench.

“It was always going to be hard for Dan because he had only been involved in an hour-long session with the boys before the game, so it will take time for him to build partnerships and understand each players’ qualities.

“If we keep playing how we did on Tuesday, we will get a lot more positive results than negative ones.

“There were plenty of positives to take from the game.”