Leyton Orient manager Danny Webb backs Aron Pollock to ‘learn’ from crucial error against Doncaster Rovers
PUBLISHED: 11:00 22 March 2017
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It would be very easy to castigate the 18-year-old, but he is one of the few players contracted to the club past this season and needs nurturing
Leyton Orient manager Danny Webb believes Aron Pollock will learn a lot following his error during Saturday’s 4-1 defeat to League Two leaders Doncaster Rovers.
The 18-year-old, who turns 19 tomorrow, attempted a square pass across his back four in the second half and it led to the visitors’ second goal.
It was a costly mistake, although Webb pointed out some of the factors in defence of the talented youngster.
“Aron didn’t give up and first half he did ever so well and second half he just made a few naïve mistakes,” said the O’s manager.
“He is a centre half who has been out injured and is playing right-back due to the lack of numbers, so I’ve thrown him in the deep end.
“There isn’t really a squad to choose from, but I am putting faith in him and others when faith hasn’t been put in them before, so the boys appreciate that.
“At the same time, whether Aron is playing right-back or centre half, they have to sometimes make mistakes to learn from them and as long as they don’t continue to make the same mistakes then they will be okay.”
It would be very easy to castigate and lambast Pollock for his error, but there are quite a few factors which need to be highlighted.
The first thing about John Marquis’ first goal on Saturday was that it was a brilliant finish from an in-form player.
Pollock should not have turned inside after receiving Josh Koroma’s pass, but after he made that decision he was left with few options.
Impressive pressing from Alfie May meant the teenager couldn’t attempt to find team-mate Michael Clark or goalkeeper Alex Cisak.
Once Pollock had come inside, which was the wrong decision, it appears his only real option was to find Tom Parkes and he didn’t execute it properly.
In the future, you would hope the 18-year-old would knock the ball straight down the line, but that type comes with experience.
While it is easy to criticise Pollock, he is one of the few players contracted to the club past this season and needs nurturing.
After bursting on the scene at the end of the 2015/16 campaign, injuries have since held back the young defender.
Pollock has struggled with quad and groin issues in recent weeks and when handed his first chance in nearly four months, he was forced to play out of position.
It was far from ideal for the ex-Millwall youngster and yet he did a more than decent job in the first half at Brisbane Road.
After the break it was a different story, but hopefully Pollock can bounce back when next given an opportunity.
Webb added: “I think it was just a little bit of naivety in the second half with a pass by Aron across his own area. I will be very surprised if that is something he tries again.
“At youth team or under-21 level you probably get away with that, but not in a game against one of the top teams in the league. Hopefully he will learn from that.”
I am certain Pollock will become a better player following this incident and he could have a crucial part to play for O’s next season, so the continued support from Orient fans is vital in ensuring his development remains on track.