Swindon Town have succeeded in tying down youth academy centre-back Joe Romanski, and Phil Brown now needs to keep his word when it comes to developing the club’s youth.
Romanski was one of three academy graduates to get some match action during Brown’s two months in interim charge, with the defender making his professional debut in a 1-0 defeat to Grimsby Town as well as the final 17 minutes in the final day’s 3-0 win over champions Accrington Stanley, a game that also saw Jordan Edwards get his first 81 minutes for the first-team.
Scott Twine saw the most football under Brown, though, adding four more matches to his tally, having made his debut in May 2018, and can be proud of his displays, despite the striker failing to net his first goal.
NEWS ?? | We are delighted to announce that @JosephRomanski has put pen to paper on a professional contract with the club.
— Swindon Town FC (@Official_STFC) June 20, 2018
Robins fans seeing ‘one of their own’ on the pitch felt alien as, despite professing to use the youth set-up, previous manager David Flitcroft did not give a single league minute to academy players at Swindon.
Goalkeeper Will Henry and Tom Smith were limited to EFL Trophy outings, while Tom Ouldridge, Jake Evans and Twine were all loaned out to various non-league clubs over the course of the season, as were Henry and Smith.
Smith has been the poster boy for Swindon’s academy in recent years, and scored 11 goals over three loan spells at Bath last season, but Brown has decided to let him leave, much to the disappointed of Town fans who feel Smith did not get a fair crack of the whip.
Brown now needs to ensure that more promising talent coming out of the academy does not go to waste.