IT WILL be back to basics for Joe Skarz tonight.
The left-back, who has been a big hit at first-team level in the absence of suspended Danny Adams, will line-up in Town's FA Youth Cup second round tie at Northampton (7.00).
Manager Peter Jackson will be at Sixfields to check first hand on the form of 17-year-old Skarz ahead of Saturday's key League I clash with Oldham at the Galpharm.
And that will be a big incentive for the rest of the young Town team, who beat Grimsby 1-0 at Blundell Park in round one.
Skarz, pictured in FA Cup action against Blackpool's Wes Hoolahan (burgundy shirt), played against Grimsby's Under 17s just four days after his senior debut in the 1-1 home draw with Scunthorpe.
Since then he has produced man of the match displays in the defeats by Blackpool (1-0 at home in the FA Cup and 3-1 away in League I).
"Joe has earned some rave reviews and rightly so, because he hasn't looked out of his depth at all," said Jackson.
"He has been cool and composed. He has a great left foot, his distribution is good and his set-piece deliveries are excellent.
"While the step up to the first team hasn't been a problem for him, I'd be surprised if the step back to play in the Youth Cup was either.
"He's a level-headed lad and he realises that, like our other Academy players, he is learning the game."
Skarz will switch to centre-back tonight, partnering Shane Killock, with David Pickering and Daniel Codman taking the full-back berths.
Goalkeeper is Simon Eastwood and the midfield four Curtis Roberts. Mitchell Bailey, James Berrett and Alex Hallam.
Up front, it's Lucas Akins, who scored a late winner at Grimsby, and Daniel Broadbent.
With Luke Malcher ruled out with an ankle injury and Adam Wilson and Daniel Racchi ineligible through age, Under 16 trio Dave Heagney, Spencer Harris and Jack Hunt are on the bench alongside Tom Jackson and goalkeeper Alex Smithies.
Academy manager Gerry Murphy and coach Graham Mitchell watched Northampton beat Luton 2-1 recently, and the former noted: "It could prove useful since whoever wins tonight will then go to Luton!
"Northampton are a decent side, who like us, play 4-4-2, and like to get the ball down on the deck.
"It will be a tough test for us but also a great experience, and the lads are looking forward to it."