Writer: Kithson Bain
Date:Thursday March 31 2011
In recent years Exeter City have developed a habit of producing talented young footballers, particularly when it comes to defenders.
Over the last five seasons Dan Seaborne, George Friend and Dean Moxey have all progressed through the youth ranks at St James` Park before moving onto to bigger and better things.
Tuesday night`s victory over Swindon saw Scott Bennett follow in the footsteps of these players as he come off the bench to make his debut for the Grecians.
With a quarter of an hour left in the game Bennett replaced the injured Troy Archibald-Henville with the score at 0-0. Bennett went on to have a hand in the winning goals it was he who was challenging for the ball from a corner when Scott Cuthbert handled and conceded a decisive penalty.
About a year ago another academy graduate Liam Sercombe made his mark with City when he began to hold down a regular place in midfield. Since then the 20-year-old has gone from strength to strength and has been a permanent fixture in the City team all season. Sercombe has even been attracting admiring glances from Premier League giants Wolves, Fulham and Chelsea.
Bennett`s progression to the first team has been steady and considered. After appearing as an unused substitute on several occasions towards the end of last season Bennett has spent most of the current campaign captaining the successful reserve side at Exeter. Through that responsibility he will have had plenty of game time with established first team players.
Once disadvantage for Bennett is that all of the above mentioned players were able to make their City debut`s in the relatively comfortable surroundings of conference football. City`s recent rise to League One has made it harder for promising youth players to make the step up to the first team but it looks as though Bennett will be given his crack at the big time.
After this promising debut the Grecians will be hoping that Bennett can go on to emulate those that have gone before him and establish himself as a regular in Paul Tisdale`s side in the future. Aged 20 Bennett has been waiting for his opportunity with the first team for a few seasons, his patience and hard work looks as though it may now be paying off.
Date:Thursday March 31 2011
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