OWLS teenager Liam Palmer is staking a claim for a full League debut at Bournemouth tomorrow.
The 19-year-old midfield player from Worksop was praised by manager Gary Megson for his 45-minute performance as a sub at Birmingham, and Palmer says he believes he is ready for the call.
It was fifth appearance of the season from the bench, but his only start came in the Carling Cup against Bury in August.
Megson hinted that the youngster may play tomorrow and said that he is in his plans for the rest of the season.
Palmer said: “We have a lot of good, experienced players. In my opinion we have the best squad in the division.
“It’s baffling, where we are [in the table.] I thought I held my own. If you get that chance you have to take it.
“I want to play football. I’ve been around the first team for a good year; I’ve seen us when we’ve lost, I’ve seen us when we’ve won. I’d like to think I’m ready, yes.”
Megson remains in the hunt for a loan defender and tried to sign Hull’s Paul McShane, who opted for Barnsley.
It follows his bid to land Leicester’s Jack Hobbs, who went to Hull.
“I think if we were at that level [Championship], they would have come to our place. Not too many players want to join the situation we’re in,” he said.
Megson added that he had come across clubs who were prepared to let players go if they got someone else in first, but that had not happened yet.
Palmer was not over-awed by the FA Cup occasion on Saturday: “It was against a Premier League team, a massive occasion; I came on when we were 2-0 down; I wouldn’t say there was that much pressure on me.
“There’s no point in letting the occasion affect you, because that can affect your performance. If you make a mistake you just get on with it.”
He praised the fans for the “tremendous” backing they gave to the team.
The teenager added: “The lads are disappinted we’ve lost 3-0. We look forward to Tuesday night and hopefully we’ll pick up a result. We know we’re good enough. We just have to get back to winning ways.”
Megson praised Reda Johnson - “he put in a really good performance” - and Palmer: “I’m delighted for Liam because he played ever so well.”