Swansea City Under-23s Keston Davies
14th August 2016
Keston Davies believes Swansea City's Under-23s are ready to take the next step as they kick off their Premier League 2 season against West Brom at Landore on Monday (7pm).
A rebrand to the development league has seen the age limit for players eligible to play in the competition rise from U21 to U23.
The Swans development squad, who reached the play-offs last season after finishing third in Division Two, will also play in the revamped EFL Trophy and Premier League International Cup this season.
Davies, who will captain the U23s side, says the team are looking forward to a season of fresh challenges.
"We've had a good pre-season, everyone has been working hard and things are looking good," the 19-year-old said.
"This season will be a good challenge and will test all of us. We know the standard will be higher in an U23s league but it is time for us to take that step up.
"Being involved with the EFL Trophy and International Cup on top of the league can only benefit our development as footballers.
"It will be a tougher season but one where we can gain valuable experience. We need to take it game by game and not get ahead of ourselves."
The U23s will be without eight players for the start of the campaign with the likes of Liam Shephard (Yeovil), Kenji Gorre (Northampton), Josh Vickers (Barnet) and Adam King (Southend) out on loan.
Despite that, Davies believes the U23s can repeat their play-off success.
"Even though we have a young squad this season I still feel we are capable of repeating our success of reaching the play offs," he added. "Our aim, of course, will be to better that and push on further.
"Players who have experienced this level of football need to be an example to our younger players and at the same time we need to keep developing ourselves.
"One of my own targets this season will be to get more goals. It was good to get the winner against Falkirk in our friendly, and that's something I am looking to do a lot more of this season."