Sam Hill
Monday 06 August 2018

Forest Green Rovers Under 18s manager Chris Barker believes there is still room for improvement after a 1-1 draw away to Cheltenham Town.

Barker’s side produced a second-half comeback to earn a point in the opening game of the season against their local rivals.

Having fallen behind early in the second half, it was Dan Ogunleye's strike late on that secured the point, adding to the youngster's impressive summer where he featured three times for the first team during pre-season.

After the match, Barker said: “A lot of the boys would have played 90 minutes for the first time in a while today so there’s room for improvement.

“Some managers would’ve looked at today’s game and taken a point so I’m happy with the performance and the result today.

“The first 15 minutes we were a bit slow and sloppy with the ball, but I think we progressed as the game went on."

Rovers went a goal down shortly after the break after a long ball was flicked on for Town’s Oliver Price to run through and slot over Dec Lehmann.

Ogunleye equalised late on with a calm finish to prevent Rovers from starting the season off with a defeat.

“Their goal I thought was a bit soft on our part,” Barker added.

“Thankfully Dan popped up with a great finish. I thought we were going to go on and win it but it’s not about that, it’s about the progression of the boys and them learning on the field."

Rovers attack threatened throughout the match, hitting the post twice and having a goal disallowed due to offside.

Barker stated he has been left with a real selection problem after being impressed by his team on the opening game of the season.

“The boys have only been together training for five weeks, but I thought the attacked looked a real danger,” he said.

“We’ve probably got five or six players that can play three or four positions, so the boys will be fighting for places which is good competition.

“There’s a good mix of speed in-behind, height, strength, and good dribblers of the ball. All the boys work really hard so there’s good choices to choose from."

Barker’s side sit fifth in the table and will face Swindon Town Under 18s at home next Saturday at the Royal Agriculture University at 11am.