Teenage starlet set to face Chorley
Friday 31 August
Sixteen-year-old Ryan Osborne could find himself thrown in at the deep end by injury-hit Ilkeston FC when they go to Chorley tomorrow afternoon.
The promising young striker really took the eye in midweek when he went on as a second half substitute against Stockport County in a Development Squad fixture and grabbed a fine hat-trick in the space of 25 minutes.
And as Kevin Wilson has decided after all that star striker Gary Ricketts will not be fit enough to be involved at Chorley because of bruised ribs and a thigh strain, the youngster from Nottingham, who signed last month as a scholar, is in line for a rapid promotion.
Said the manager: “We don’t have too many options with Daryll Thomas and Alex Ford also sidelined with hamstring problems so it could be a big day in the life of young Ryan Osborne.
“On the evidence of what I’ve seen so far, I’ll have no qualms about putting him in. He’s got a natural eye for a goal and is always looking to get in behind defenders.
“I’ve always believed very strongly that it’s how good you are that matters, not how old you are, and hopefully the fact that Ryan is banging on the door will send out a powerful message to the other members of our Academy.”
Laurie Wilson will again be a notable absentee but the Robins could welcome back Ryan Wilson (pictured), depending on how he reacts to taking part in last night’s training session.
Added the manager: “He still has a bit of stiffness from his groin injury - which is natural - but I’m optimistic that he will be fit enough to start.
“It’s hard work for us at the moment with all the injury problems but it’s essential that we don’t try to use that as an excuse. We have a strong squad of players and I’m looking for the others to step up and take extra responsibility.
“We need to build on our first win of the season against Eastwood and although it’s a big ‘ask’ to think we could get four points from the games against Chorley and then Rushall Olympic on Monday, that has to be our target.”