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Dagenham & Redbridge midfielder Leo Donnellan believes loan spell at Hendon was beneficial for development

PUBLISHED: 09:00 17 January 2017

Leo Donnellan of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Leo Donnellan of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Daggers teenager spent time with Greens after joining from Queens Park Rangers in the summer

Dagenham & Redbridge midfielder Leo Donnellan says that his loan spell earlier this season at Hendon stood him in good stead to make his debut at North Ferriby United.

The teenager moved to Victoria Road in the summer following his release from Queens Park Rangers, but despite being involved in a number of matchday squads, did not make his National League debut until January.

Instead, the Republic of Ireland youth international made the short switch to Hendon, who play in the Ryman Premier, and Donnellan feels the loan was beneficial for his development.

“I spent a bit of time at Hendon which is a few steps lower, but it’s men football,” he said.

“Apart from my time at Worcester City last year, that’s the first time I’ve played regularly at men’s football.

“That put me in good stead for my debut and it was a nice moment, especially playing next to my brother (Shaun).

“It was like being down the park when we were young; we’ve made good progress since then!”

Midfielder Donnellan’s development will almost certainly benefited from having a number of experienced players to learn from in his position.

The likes of Luke Howell, Andre Boucaud and Luke Guttridge all have plenty of knowledge to pass on to Donnellan and others, such as fellow teenager Tyrique Hyde.

And Donnellan appears to have already picked up a number of things from the experienced members of the squad, which he believes have helped him improve.

“It’s fantastic having such experienced lads in the dressing room and I’ve learnt a lot from all of them so far,” he added.

Things like how to receive the ball, when to make certain runs, how to keep hold of the ball and slow things down, which I think is the main thing.

“A lot of young players want to impress all the time, but the experienced boys teach you when to slow it down and when to speed it up to control the tempo of the games.”

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