Luke Matheson Becomes Rochdale’s Youngest Ever Debutant
Rochdale AFC’s record for youngest ever debutant was broken on Tuesday night, by 15-year-old Luke Matheson.
He was introduced as a 13th minute substitute in Dale’s Checkatrade Trophy win over Bury at the Crown Oil Arena.
The record had been held by Dan Adshead who appeared in last season’s competition against the same opponents at the age of 16 years and 17 days.
Matheson, who has progressed through the ranks at Dale’s Academy and is still at school, now holds the record at the age of 15 years and 336 days.
Manager Keith Hill labelled the youngster’s Man of the Match display as “outstanding”.
“Luke Matheson – wow!” said Hill.
“That first-half was a little insight into what we see on the training pitch. Jim McNulty came over when it was obvious Connor Randall had a serious injury, asked me if I was putting Luke Matheson on. We know what he can do. It’s not a leap of faith, because we know what he can do.
“The supporters were receptive to Luke, and the players are and were as well. He’s been training with the first team whilst he’s not been at school during the summer and I’m really pleased for him that he got his chance. They’re special nights when that happens.
“He was outstanding.”
Matheson was a member of the Youth Team’s EFL North West Youth Alliance League title winning side last season and travelled with the first team squad to a league match at Doncaster in December of last year.
He was also training with the squad during his school holidays, when he spoke to iFollow Dale about what it is like to train with the first team back in April.