Glenn excited by loan duo

PUBLISHED: 07:00 22 April 2008 | UPDATED: 15:32 10 September 2010

Chris Lakey

Glenn Roeder has heaped praise on two of his teenage loan players - and predicted bright futures for them.

Kieran Gibbs enjoyed only his fifth start in City colours at the weekend - a surprise inclusion in midfield ahead of Darel Russell - while Alex Pearce had to give way in the centre of defence, having kept out Gary Doherty and Jason Shackell in recent weeks.

Glenn Roeder has heaped praise on two of his teenage loan players - and predicted bright futures for them.

Kieran Gibbs enjoyed only his fifth start in City colours at the weekend - a surprise inclusion in midfield ahead of Darel Russell - while Alex Pearce had to give way in the centre of defence, having kept out Gary Doherty and Jason Shackell in recent weeks.

Gibbs is available for this weekend's crunch match at home to QPR, but then heads back to Arsenal, with his loan expiring next Monday and a place in next season's first team squad to fight for.

“He is a good footballer,” said Roeder. “I would have liked to play him more, but for different reasons I haven't, but he is going to have a good career.

“All he lacks at the moment - he's 18 years old and he's physically not particularly strong. If he has the right weights programme, in my opinion, in the next 18 months, when he goes back to his club, if he develops that physical strength with a weights programme and natural development as he gets older, he's a hell of a player.

“He's got a lovely left foot and has got an eye for a pass. He's a classy footballer and I'm not surprised he's an Arsenal player.”

Pearce, 19, will be available for both of City's remaining games before heading back to Reading.

“I wish I had 20 Alex Pearces here next year because he has the most fantastic character you could ever wish to work with, as a human being,” said the City boss.

“He is so mentally tough - 19 years old, you'd think he was 30. He needs to work on his pace, which unfortunately, generally speaking, is a god-given talent.

“But if he works hard on his pace he can find a couple of yards over the next few years and I think he reads the game very well and will have a fine career.

“He is an absolute dream to manage.”

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