Youth is the key to Sheffield Steelers’ future

Sheffield coach Paul Thompson says the next generation of Steelers is already proving its worth to the club.

Liam Kirk, 17, Cole Shudra, 19, and 16-year-old Kieran Brown all played like men in last weekend’s games against Swedish side Sodertalje SK.

Shudra coped well with the big, fast Swedish attackers on the blue line, while the fourth line forwards did not concede and carried an offensive threat.

In one shift, teenager Brown took a shot on goal and gave a veteran d-man a meaty slash with his stick!

“You can see the three of them aren’t afraid to give it a go” said Thompson. “We feel they have talent and we are going to give them that opportunity. And they will all play in the Elite League.

“Not only did the fourth linen not get scored on, it created as well.

Sheffield Steelers before their Sodertalje match on Sunday

Sheffield Steelers before their Sodertalje match on Sunday

“Kirky is learning his trade, but you can see he has got a touch. And when he is around the net, things happen.”

Thompson believes the experienced Matt Marquadt-John Armstrong-Colton Fretter line will make an impact. Hopefully, he said, it will develop into “a big power line.”

Sheffield host Rob Wilson’s German DEL side Nurnberg Ice Tigers at iceSheffield this weekend.

Thompson had a good coaching record against ex-Steeler Rob Wilson when he was at Newcastle.

“I don’t think he ever came into Coventry in those days with 3,000 NHL games within his team! It might differ this week” he said. “We expect two great games.”

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