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INTERVIEW: Luke Tisdale Provides Under-23s Squad Update

The Under-23s coach discusses Loans and Injuries...

1 September 2021

Sky Blues Under-23s Head Coach, Luke Tisdale believes loan moves for Jack Burroughs, Tom Billson and Will Bapaga will be valuable for their development.

The trio have joined Ross County, Scunthorpe United and Grimsby Town respectively, on loan until the end of the season.

With Bapaga, Billson and Burroughs all having come through the Sky Blues Academy, these moves will enable them to battle for first team football on a regular basis.

“Jack was out at Gloucester last season and did really well until Covid curtailed their season.” Tisdale said.

“Ross County is a brilliant loan for him, so if he can get himself in the team playing in the Scottish Premiership every week, that will be an unbelievable loan for him.

“He might find it tough at times, I know they had Rangers last weekend and they have Celtic coming up soon, but he just needs to get going and get into the team and it will be a great loan.

“The same can be said for Tom Billson, unfortunately he got injured on his debut, but for a Goalkeeper to go out on loan and start the first game of the season is great for him because it doesn’t happen often.

“Hopefully, Tom can get himself fit again and get back to Scunthorpe in the coming weeks and get some games.

Finally, with Will, he has gone to a tough league and sometimes he can be like a playground player, “as he likes to dribble past people, so I’m sure he will get upended a few times.

“Ultimately, it’s up to him to see how much he learns, and I think he can be a real threat in that league and Grimsby are a side that will want to be up there come the end of the season, so hopefully he can come back with a medal if he does his job.”

Elsewhere in the development squad, Tisdale provided an update on the injury status of both Jay McGrath and Aidan Finnegan.

McGrath missed last week's win over Colchester, whilst Finnegan has been out of action since December of 2020.

“Jay McGrath had an awkward fall when we played Ipswich. He went up for a header and then landed on his coccyx and hasn’t managed to shake it off.

“He has returned to training, but he wasn’t ready for the game against Colchester.

“Aidan Finnegan has had a pars fracture in his back and that’s kept him out since December last year, but he has now had the all clear to resume training again.

“He’s been on the bike and hopefully we can have him on the grass running in the next few weeks and we will have to manage him back carefully.

“He’s had a real tough time and it’s just great to see him back with the boys. He travelled to Ipswich with us last week and he is a massive part of the group, he’s just been unfortunate that he’s had an injury which has halted his progression.”


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