LOUIS Thompson has saluted Swindon Town’s renewed desire to give homegrown youth a chance.
Several academy graduates have played major roles in the Robins’ recent run of good form - with Miles Storey scoring in victories against Tranmere Rovers and Sheffield United, Louis Thompson netting the winner against the Blades and his brother Nathan captaining the team to their longest unbeaten streak in League One all season.
Louis, who has been on Town’s books since the ripe old age of eight, stressed that under previous regimes the younger element of the squad was not given a fair chance to prove their worth.
This season, with a model in place designed to achieve sustainability over the coming two years, the midfielder emphasised that is no longer the case.
He told the Advertiser: “When you look at the team you can see that we’ve been given a chance to prove ourselves. In previous years if someone got injured or something like that, they’d bring in an emergency loan - an experienced player.
“The young lads coming in and coming through the academy especially is a great credit to the club and proves how well they’re doing.
“We’ve had our chance, we’ve got a lot to thank the club for. They’ve brought me through right since I was eight or nine years old so I’ve got a lot of people here who I grew up with.
“I’ve just got to thank them and the manager now - Luke (Williams, assistant coach) and the gaffer. They’ve brought a different side to my game and it’s an honour to have them here.
“It also gives people like Jeremy Newton (academy director) and Jamie Pitman (youth team manager) a bit of a boost to know that if they produce players they’re going to get a chance - they’re not just going to sit out and fall by the wayside.
“If you produce well you always know when you’re here that you’re going to get a chance. There’s never a time when you get disheartened because you can see that when someone gets injured they don’t just go into the loan market. They try to use who they’ve got and if you’re good enough, you’re old enough.
“That’s the motto of this club.”