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First chance for young Wolves duo
Published : 23 Aug 2010 17:32:00
Wolves manager Mick McCarthy will hand first-team debuts to two teenagers in Tuesday's Carling Cup second round tie against Southend. Striker Sam Winnall and defender Danny Batth, both 19, will start as McCarthy rings the changes with Saturday's Premier League match against Newcastle in mind. McCarthy said: "Danny went to Colchester and had a successful spell with them. He played against Walsall in a pre-season friendly and was different class. "Sam's had an excellent pre-season. He missed most of last year after a cruciate ligament operation. He's got himself back and is looking in really good shape. "He's been banging goals in in training and I'm really pleased with him. "It's their potential and form that's got them into the game. There could have been a few others, but the reality is it should be a solid base of first-team players and a couple of lads who've been showing good form. "I guess I'm hoping for a bit of inspiration from them but if they do struggle I've got nine others who are Premier League players." McCarthy paid tribute to Winnall's resilience in overcoming serious injury. "There were times last year when he was struggling with his rehab," he said. "He was beating that punchbag up - I think there was quite a bit of frustration there. "He's done exceptionally well to get back as quickly as he has." And the Wolves manager is confident that Batth can handle himself against more experienced players. He said: "He's a big, powerful young man who physically can cope with any league. He's been training with us and he's enjoyed the fact he's been training against (Steven) Fletcher, (Kevin) Doyle and (Andy) Keogh. "He's had to compete against them, so he's had a good grounding." McCarthy said the rest of his team will consist of "lads who haven't been playing every week, but are Premier League footballers". He added that this match is a chance for those on the fringes of the first team to put themselves in contention for future games, saying: "It's important for the players coming in that they play well, to put themselves forward so if I need somebody for a Premier League game they're ready to go. "I know what happens in these Carling Cup ties, you play against teams who've had four or five games and they're all battle-hardened. "They turn up here and whoever it might be wants to cause an upset. It's important that doesn't happen."