Jos Luhukay insists age is no barrier when it comes to a place into his Sheffield Wednesday side.
Manager Luhukay showed his willingness to field youngsters when he started defender Connor O’Grady and Frederik Nielsen in the FA Cup replay with Carlisle United on Tuesday, just four days after sending Sean Clare off the bench against Sheffield United.
While injuries to key senior players have no doubt helped the young trio get game time, Luhukay says everyone – experienced or not – has the opportunity to stake a claim for a place.
“Personally, I like it when you have young players who have a very good identification with the club and fans,” Luhukay said.
“When young players put in good performances in training and games, I don’t look to age.
“What is important to me is the quality.
“Whether a player is 18, 25, or 30, for me it’s important what I see every day on if he will play Saturday. The intensity he puts in every day.
“Every player now - including the young ones - have a chance to give 100 per cent every day, and see who will play on Saturday.”
Both O’Grady and Nielsen could be in contention to face Cardiff City this afternoon with Glenn Loovens serving suspension and Tom Lees and Joost van Aken still sidelined.
Luhukay said he was pleased with the pair’s performance in the win over Carlisle and hinted other young players may get their chance today.
He said: “For us, it was very enjoyable.
“For the young players maybe it was a little bit of a surprise, but not us as we see that every day for the last 12 days.
“We were working on that, and maybe on Saturday it will be a new surprise.”