AFC Sudbury manager Jamie Godbold has sung the praises of teenager Alfie Carroll after impressing in his full debut for the first team.
The 18-year-old made his full debut for Godbold’s side in Saturday’s Buildbase FA Trophy third round qualifying win at Kings Langley (3-1), before also completing another 90 minutes in the 3-2 victory at Billericay Town on Tuesday night.
And the AFC boss says he has been impressed with how the young full-back has coped with the rigours of playing at a higher level.
“He’s done exceptionally well,” Godbold enthused. “He’s deserved to keep his place as have the whole back-line, they’ve been terrific.
“Aidan Austin usually plays left wing but has been playing as a left-back in a makeshift defence for us.
“But I said from day one if you play well, no matter how old you are or who is not playing, then you’ll keep the shirt.”
Carroll made his debut for Sudbury’s first team as an 88th minute substitute in the 3-0 defeat away at Kingstonian on October 8, but has been handed a bigger opportunity to shine by playing back-to-back 90 minutes in the last week.
“Players who come up from the academy (into the first team) are very professional in their game management,” Godbold said.
“Alfie’s played the last two games like he’s played all season for us.
“On Tuesday night he was up against Lewis Taaffe, who has been playing in the Conference South this season, and he performed extremely well.
“We know he’s young and he’s going to have dips (in form) so we’ve got to manage his progress with him.”
The Yellows will be aiming to record back-to-back wins in the Ryman League Premier Division for the first time since August when they host Harlow Town on Saturday (3pm). A trip to lower league AFC Hornchurch in the third round of the Alan Turvey Trophy then awaits Godbold’s men next Tuesday (7.45pm).
“It’s going to be another tough game on Saturday,” Godbold said. “Harlow have hit a purple patch and had a really good result in the Trophy beating Havant (and Waterlooville) at the weekend.
“Both teams know each other well from last season so I’m expecting it to be a really good game.
“In the last two games I think we’ve got the results our performances have deserved.
“It was a good performance on Tuesday against Billericay and it sets us up well going into Saturday.”
While full-back Jack Wilkinson (strained hamstring) is expected to be out for another two to three weeks, AFC are set to be boosted this weekend by the returns of defender James Baker and winger Jordan Blackwell from suspension.