Jarrad Branthwaite was praised after making his Football League debut at the tender age of 17 years and 114 days.

The Cumbrian defender was thrown into the action for Carlisle United at Plymouth.

And although the Blues fell to a third straight league defeat, the Wigton youngster was hailed for his efforts.

“Jarrad, for 17, gave an outstanding performance, that was a real plus point,” said manager Steven Pressley.

“He did better than well, for a 17-year-old kid making his league debut. I thought he was outstanding.

"I’m just disappointed we didn’t win the game for him.”

It was the latest step in Branthwaite’s promising development, after he was handed pro terms at 16 last season and made two senior appearances in the Leasing.com Trophy earlier this campaign.

Harry McKirdy, meanwhile, will be assessed ahead of tomorrow night’s home clash with Northampton after failing to recover from his ankle injury in time for the Plymouth trip.

Pressley added: “He tried to train on Thursday, he had a reaction from it, came in to speak to me after training and just felt he wasn’t quite right, and although it would have been good to have him [at Plymouth], the last thing I wanted to do was put him on as a sub and see him break down.

“He’s rested up for the weekend and if he’s not available for Tuesday, hopefully he will be for the following Saturday.”