THE next generation of Herefordshire footballers are already making their mark in the men’s game as part of a pathway.

Westfields started a development team this season which play in the Herefordshire Premier with some of their youngsters impressing manager Phil Glover enough to play first team football.

The likes of Camron Davies, Zach Johnston and Ben Vine have been combining playing for Hereford under-18s alongside senior football at Allpay Park.

“It was really pleasing that we had six lads under the age of 18 in the squad which for us was really pleasing,” said Westfields manager Phil Glover.

“The development side that is six months old has been really good. They join in training with us and a few have been drafted in.

“On Saturday we had six senior lads out through suspension, injury and work but I had no qualms about drafting the lads in.

“Young Cameron Davies has joined in training with us the last couple of weeks and impressed. Sam Griffiths and Zach Johnston who are involved in the squad have always been in and around in training.

“The lads know what they’re capable of in training so when they’ve stepped up it has been good.”

Vine has become a staple of the Westfields first team battling for a top three stop in the Hellenic Premier this season.

Meanwhile, Harry Pitman has also scored bags of goals since progressing from the development side.

“We’ll certainly be looking to give youngsters an opportunity,” added Glover.

“With Harrison Summers last year, Ben Vine and Harry Pitman this year I think it shows the county that we’ve got a good pathway.

“If lads are good enough they will be given the chance and that’s the case between now and the end of the season.”

Glover added that there is a lot on and off the pitch for the next generation of football talent in Herefordshire to lean.

“It’s not all about ability, there are plenty of lads around with the ability,” Glover added.

“It’s having that mindset of not being involved in squads, handling that disappointment of not starting when they think they should be and learning their way really in the game.

“The young lads aren’t guaranteed to come into a team like Westfields and demand a place in the first team or squad.

“We believe it’s all of those things, they come in, learn how to prepare right, train with intensity and take that into a Saturday.

“It’s also about doing the other things in non-league football, how we play, when to go long and short, when to mix it up, when to be physical and to be savvy with it.

“It’s all those things to bring together and hopefully over the years it will stay with them and they can go into their 20s being very good footballers.”