Ross County defender Josh Reid is on the radar of English League One club Portsmouth.
Teenager Reid has been an impressive performer for the Staggies in his maiden senior campaign, having started all five games since making his debut in the opening day 1-0 victory over Motherwell earlier this month.
Reid’s displays have attracted attention from Pompey, who finished fifth in England’s third-tier last term, although it is believed no approach has been made.
Having handed Reid his senior breakthrough this season, Staggies manager Stuart Kettlewell is thrilled with the way the 18-year-old has grasped his opportunity.
Kettlewell said: “I had hoped he was going to perform to the level he has done. We have had a few aspects in every game that has been part of his education. Most teams have a pacy wide player that looks to get at full-backs so it’s been a really good education for him.
“He has acquitted himself well. I maybe sounded over confident before the Motherwell game when a few people were surprised to see him starting but I was really comfortable with what he is as a player, his mentality and how he would deal with any adversity that comes in the game.
“I knew he wouldn’t get carried away with himself even if he was doing well. I can’t say it’s a huge surprise to me how well he’s done. The timing was right for him to come into the team. He has taken the chance with both hands.
“Some young players will take a dip in form and that might be the case with Josh but he has shown us in the first five games that he can play at this level. And that has to be a huge confidence boost for him because it can be important to get across that bridge and prove to yourself you can mix it in that company.”
Kettlewell, who previously led County’s under-20s team to the Development League title, hopes the progress of Reid can be the catalyst for more young players to break into his first team.
He added: “We have four or five training with the first team on a daily basis. They have done exceptionally well. Josh is the one that has got his chance but it’s a great incentive for the others to see that there will be opportunities if we believe they are good enough.
“I will have no fear to put them in. Having been involved in youth football I want the chance to play young players.
“I’m not just going to put them in as a token gesture – there’s a misconception of ‘let’s play young players because they are young’ but they have to be the best player in that position for me.
“You can see from Josh he has gone and played the position but also been a voice on the park to the guys surrounding him – you have to have that ability to communicate with senior players as well. He’s been terrific.”