ALBION believe the Club’s junior players will benefit in the long-term from their bruising experience in the Checkatrade Trophy this season.
This week’s 3-0 defeat at Shrewsbury followed a 3-1 reverse at Walsall to ensure the young Baggies will go no further in the competition.
They face one final group game, at holders Coventry next month, when Jimmy Shan’s youngsters will again be doing battle with more experienced opponents.
“People will think the results are disappointing,” says joint Assistant Head Coach Ben Garner, “but we’ve got 14 players out on loan which was something we were very keen to do.
“We need that group out there and getting used to fending for themselves away from home.
“It has weakened the 23s group for the Checkatrade games but hopefully these young lads who have tasted it understand more now about what is required at Walsall and Shrewsbury... we are hoping that it will be beneficial to them.”
The Baggies Checkatrade squad has been made up largely of 18 year olds and younger and they have found the physical demands as difficult as anything.
“It’s been a big step up for some but ultimately we hope they will benefit in the long run,” added Garner.