Darren Ferguson says Doncaster Rovers need to make big improvements at academy level and find a way of keeping their most promising kids on their books.
“For our club there needs to be a big improvement at that level, and not just with the players but in terms of the coaching they get,” Ferguson told BBC Radio Sheffield this week.
“I think that’s pivotal to young players coming through and that’s something that definitely we need to improve on.
“It’s difficult for us and the thing that keeps getting thrown at me is that where we are geographically means we keep losing players to Sheffield United and Sheffield Wednesday - but I don’t buy into that so much.
“We’ve got to find a way of actually making sure that we keep our better younger players. I’m talking here about the 13 and 14-year-olds here.
“Our way has to be that we give them a vision that they’re going to get in the first team. We’ve got to do it slightly differently.
“I think everyone would agree that the fans want to see young local players in the team. It can make a difference to the community.
“It can be difficult but that’s what we want to do at Doncaster, we want to get young players through.”
Following Ferguson’s arrival at Rovers, Paul Wilson departed as head of youth. He was replaced by Kieran Scarff last year.