Southampton’s youngsters have had the benefit of a 10-day break in the run up to tomorrow’s trip to third-placed Tottenham Hotspur in Premier League 2.
Their last tie - a trip to Forest Green Rovers in the EFL Trophy - ended in narrow defeat, but the performance was far more characteristic of Radhi Jaïdi’s side than the game preceding it (a heavy loss to Everton).
The Under-23s coach was encouraged by the display against a senior Forest Green team, where Harlem Hale and the ever-impressive Dan N’Lundulu were among the goals, but he also knows a trip to the capital comes with its own challenges.
"Every game is a test for us," Jaïdi begun. "These are very young boys who need to grow with every experience they have.
"Again we'll have a young side because a few of our regular boys are not available. But the priority for us is to keep providing players with opportunity.
"When young boys play up a level it's a good way to learn, so they need to be open to that and keep the hard work.
"The development aspect is most important and the way you achieve that is by giving players a chance to express themselves."