UNDER 18s boss Alan McLoughlin has described new Swindon Town manager Phil Brown as a breath of fresh air.

McLoughlin, who today will oversee Town’s Under 18s and 16s development games against Portsmouth at Stanley Park, spoke of Brown’s keen interest in the club’s academy and development sides.

The former Hull City boss first linked up with the County Ground squad just under four weeks ago, bringing assistant manager Brian Horton with him.

And, despite being out of contract at the end of the season, Brown has already made a good impression among his colleagues.

McLoughlin said: “He’s been very good.

“Even though we’re not sure what will happen at the end of the season, the interest him and Brian Horton have in our youth set-up is great.

“He wants to know all the players, it’s a breath of fresh air and he has a great record of bringing young players through.

“I like the way he handles things and communicates with the club.

“With Phil on board, some of our younger lads may be given opportunities - but players must be good enough to step up.”

McLoughlin emphasised the importance of ‘drip feeding’ players information and added it’s not always appropriate to call upon the club’s youngsters to perform, depending on the game situation.

Defender Joe Romanski has appeared on the bench and has been one player eyeing a first-team spot, but he’s yet to feature under Brown’s reign.

McLoughlin said: “Sometimes it’s difficult to drop them into a game depending on the situation.

“But he (Phil Brown) has been great and speaks to us virtually every day.

“He wants to know how our age teams are getting on, even if I just send him a text message.

“It makes you appreciate everything when you work with people like that.”