Youngster James Rowland hoping for more opportunities with Shrewsbury Town
Talented young Shrewsbury midfielder James Rowland hopes more chances to shine come his way after another impressive display.
The 17-year-old from Stafford, a former West Bromwich Albion youngster, was named Town's man of the match as Sam Ricketts' side went down to a disappointing 4-0 Carabao Cup exit against Rotherham.
But Rowland put in an 'outstanding' display, according to Ricketts, as Town fans chanted the youngster's name on an otherwise difficult evening.
It was just the midfielder's third outing for Shrewsbury – and second start – after previous appearances in the EFL Trophy.
Rowland, who signed his first professional deal towards the end of last season, also caught the eye over pre-season while featuring in a number of friendlies. He has been training with Ricketts' first-team squad for a number of months.
"As a young player if you work hard you can get the opportunities and the gaffer has given me mine," Rowland said.
"I got the chance last season at Port Vale in the cup and this evening I got the chance against Rotherham, hopefully there are more chances to come for me.
"To get the chance to start you have to work hard, work hard in training and then hopefully your talent does the talking from there.
"It was good to get out there in front of our fans and it was just disappointing we couldn't get the result for them.
"I thought I had a good pre-season and I was just waiting for the opportunity to come, tonight I gave it a good go and gave it my all.
"I gave it a good go and gave it everything I had, and hopefully that will put me in a good position to keep going on this season."
Rowland, who is still in the second-year scholar age category, feels that training with Ricketts' first-team squad is helping him progress.
After the midfielder was Shrewsbury's best player in a pre-season friendly at Cheltenham this summer, the Town boss admitted he wouldn't have second thoughts about using Rowland in a league fixture.
"It's been really good for me and I feel like I am developing as a player," Rowland added.
"Every day I go into training trying to get better and trying to push my way into the first team."
A much-changed Shrewsbury side, which included eight changes from the side that lost 1-0 at MK Dons, found themselves 2-0 down inside 180 seconds against the Millers and bowed out of the League Cup on a chastening evening.
"That (start) put us in a difficult position as you are always climbing from then on," Rowland said.
"Unfortunately we conceded another two but the lads did give it their all.
"It would have been nice to get a win as that's what playing football is all about.
"It was a nice individual note for me to get the man of the match though.
"It's a learning curve for everyone to see the levels we need to be at, and hopefully we can learn from this and get three points on Saturday.”