After spending the majority of the last two months training and playing with our young reserves side, Christian Ziege is well placed to make an assessment on the prospect of Academy products breaking through the ranks.
The German international - cruelly struck down with knee injury in his first team return against West Ham - hooked up with the second string as he regained fitness following a second thigh operation and has featured in four out the last five reserve fixtures.
The team secured two wins and two draws with Christian on board and it gave him the chance to monitor the progress of reserve regulars Dean Marney, Lee Barnard, Mark Yeates, Paul O'Donoghue and Mark Hughes.
Keep up the good work appears to be the message from the elegant leftie.
"If they work as hard as they did when I was with them, I think they have a chance," he reported. "There is talent but, obviously, it is no easy to break through to the first team.
"They are doing well though and we have some good footballers there. I enjoyed playing with them.
"We have played some terrific football - especially against Wimbledon. It is full credit to the young lads because they showed the right attitude and showed how they can play football. It was fantastic and I did really enjoy it.
"If they keep working hard, one day there will be the chance for them to take the next step."