It was quite the baptism of fire for teenager Sam Fishburn on Tuesday night as he bagged a brace on his debut for Lancaster City, helping them to a dramatic 3-2 victory on the road at Witton Albion.
Fishburn, who turns 18 in November, started his loan spell earlier that day and announced himself in style to his new team mates.
“I want Sam to be scoring against men,” manager Chris Beech said. “I think he’s outgrown youth football now and he needs his next challenge.
“We saw him struggle a bit against Penrith and in some of the other pre-season games. For him to play for Lancaster and score, I hope he got roughed up a bit, and I’m pleased for Lancaster that he’s scored for them.
“It’s exactly why you send players out, and he’ll take confidence from that in his new surroundings. Hopefully it continues because it’s good for Sam, for Lancaster and for us.”
“This is what we do with players, we find the best way to help them to improve and develop,” he added. “It’s old news now but Aaron Hayden left the building a completely different player from the one that came in.
“He now gets paid a lot of money, and fair play to him. We can’t do that, so I have to make sure that whatever we do, whether it’s bringing people in or helping them to get better, it’s for the right reasons.
“Joe Riley is another example. Last year he was playing as an outside right against Oldham. He’s a completely different person now.
“He understands what I want and what you have to do to play in my team as a midfielder. All of the lads understand what I ask for and it’s just a case of making sure we stick to our traits and look forward to every game we have.”