In a funny way, Clive Allen was almost pleased that his reserve side had to face a physical challenge against Leicester City on Monday night.
Tackles flew in and there were a few niggles, a few personal battles and no surprise when Peter Canero was sent off for a second yellow card.
Such a game is somewhat of a rarity at reserve level and the lads passed the test with flying colours in a 2-1 win with goals from David Limbersky and Mounir El Hamdaoui on his debut.
Development coach Clive said: "It was a feisty game, a lot of challenges, very physical but what pleased me was the lads stuck in.
"They had to work hard, had to take the physical challenge and one or two of the lads are starting to come to terms with it.
"Emil, David, Rodrigo - it's very new to them but they are starting to cope.
"At half-time I said we might need to be ugly at times but still look to the quality we have in our game.
"We needed to play better in the second half and I felt we did that, there was a better quality of pass and we coped well with the physical pressure they put us under. That bodes well for the future."