Rangers academy coach Graeme Murty has urged Nathan Patterson to learn from a tough day at the office against Atletico Madrid.
The right-back skippered the Gers U19 side who were knocked out of the UEFA Youth League at Firhill in midweek after a 4-0 defeat to the Spanish giants.
Patterson was one of the brightest sparks for the home team in attack, with his overlapping runs and crossing proving dangerous.
However, defensively, he found himself up against the outstanding Rodrigo Riquelme, and at times, struggled to get near him.
Early in the second half, the talented Spanish youngster ghosted past Patterson to set up the visitors’ second goal and kill off the tie.
Speaking after the game, Murty stressed the importance of the 18-year-old facing such challenges and learning from them.
“It was great – international talent against international talent,” he said. ‘Nathan looks really strong, he’s had lots of successes this season, he’s had lots of positives, he’s in a good place.”
“He’s come up against top-quality opposition here and do you know what? Sometimes you get beaten.
“That’s great, deal with it. Find out why. Why did he beat you? Is it your foot position? Is it your hip position? Actually, is it to do with the fact that he got me a little bit off balance because of the feint of his shoulder?
“If that’s the case, fabulous. We want him to play against quality opposition, because it’s the only way we’re going to make this kid better and make him ready for what is hopefully, going to be a really really good career.
“He’s going to have tough days. The more tough days we can give him the better because he knows, ultimately, he’s supported by a fantastic network of people behind him, who will give him that time to grow, to make mistakes, but also, with the end game of developing him into better than he currently is.”