Wayne Hatswell said that one impact of the size of Swindon Town’s squad is that it has presented young players with the chance to prove they are good enough.

After having five graduates of the Swindon academy involved against Harrogate Town on Saturday, minutes were given to 11 in Town’s final Bristol Street Motors Trophy group match against Exeter City.

Assistant Manager Hatswell said that Town handing so many opportunities to academy players this season has given them a great chance to show they are good enough for league football.

He said: “If you look at the size of our squad then they [academy players] will get an opportunity and I think we have done that since the start of the season.

“With a club like Swindon, that is a part of our ethos, we have had a few who are younger who have moved on to bigger things, but if people can look and see that there is a chance to develop and get into Swindon’s first-team [it is a good thing].

“If you are good enough then you will get an opportunity and that is pretty much across the board.

“If you are good enough, you are old enough, so we are trying to help in that process with some good coaches, but it is about taking things on board, you can tell a player to do everything, but it is down to them at the end of the day.”

Hatswell said that the opportunity for players like Joel McGregor, who made his first-team debut against Exeter, to play against senior players and learn from the experience was very important for their development.

He said: “They have to go look back at it, watch their clips, relook at the game, see what they did well and what they didn’t.

“For the likes of Miles [Obodo], I will be looking at him and thinking what do the typical League Two defenders want to do, how he can be proactive towards that, and instead of getting in a wrestle with them, what can he do with his timings and movements to get on the ball.

“There is never a day where they are not going to learn, but it helps sometimes when you play against better players, and they would have felt that tonight.

“You have got to take the positives out of it and you have got to learn from it.”