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Fletcher feels Harvey will be able to take sudden attention in his stride

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: December 29, 2012

Plymouth Argyle's Tyler Harvey celebrates his goal against Torquay United on Boxing Day Picture : Phil Mingo/Pinnacle

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Plymouth Argyle manager Carl Fletcher knows there will be high expectations on the Pilgrims' 17-year-old striker Tyler Harvey, after he scored on his full debut for the club against Torquay United on Boxing Day.

The Pilgrims apprentice netted a 90th-minute equaliser as the npower League Two derby ended in a 1-1 draw. Not surprisingly, all the headlines were about Harvey after the game, but Fletcher is confident that he can take the attention in his stride.

The Argyle manager believes Harvey is in a good environment to continue his development as a player of considerable potential. As he prepared for today's home game against Wycombe Wanderers, Fletcher said: "In football at any level, you have to manage fans' expectations.

"He's still only 17, so let's not get carried away. He has come in and done well in his first game. But we will look after him," Fletcher added. "We have good experienced lads in the changing room who will keep his feet on the ground and will help him along.

"He kind of epitomised the whole team's performance against Torquay. It was great he came in and did well, but there were a lot of guys out there who did well."

Harvey made his full debut for Argyle in the Devon derby after two previous substitute appearances. Fletcher was not surprised that Harvey scored against Torquay or that he put in such a good all-round performance.

The Plymouth boss said: "It was a case of getting someone out there who would do well for the team. That's why we went with Tyler. We knew he would make an impact with his enthusiasm and work-rate, and with his quality on the ball. He has been a regular scorer for the youth team so we had no doubts he would get chances – and he took one of them."

Harvey has already agreed to sign a professional contract at Argyle when he comes to the end of his two-year apprenticeship in the summer. He is one of a trio of talented Plymouth-born teenagers who have already made a mark at their home-town club.

Midfielder Luke Young, 19, and 18-year-old striker Matt Lecointe have also shown a lot of promise for the future. All three are former Ivybridge Community College students. Fletcher said: "We want to bring the young players through and we want them to do well for the club."

Fletcher believes it is important for Argyle, as a focal point of the local community, to give local talent a chance to shine. He said: "I think it's great the local lads have come through the youth team.

"That's pleasing from our point of view. They are doing well and it shows promise for the future. They also know what this club means to people and the history of the club.

"Where we are at financially, we just can't go out and spend loads of money on players so you have got to produce your own," Fletcher added.

Wycombe, today's opponents, dropped to 19th position in League Two after losing 4-0 at Cheltenham Town on Boxing Day. They are one place and two points better off than the Pilgrims.

The Buckinghamshire side were completely outplayed at Cheltenham but they had been in fine form before their visit to Whaddon Road, winning four of their previous five League games and drawing the other one.

Wycombe player-manager Gareth Ainsworth remained positive despite the defeat in Gloucestershire. He said: "We have done really well lately and we can't win every game.

"It has brought us back down to earth, but I'm still confident we can go to Plymouth and give them a game. There is plenty of passion in the dressing room."

Plymouth Argyle (from): Gilmartin, Cole; Berry, Nelson, Blanchard, Purse, Bhasera, Williams, Lowry, Hourihane, Molesley, Wotton, Young, Lennox, Gurrieri, Cowan-Hall, Feeney, Chadwick, Griffiths, Harvey, Lecointe, Richards.

Doubtful: Molesley (hamstring), Wotton (back).

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