Chris Beech hopes rookie Carlisle United pro Keelan Leslie can make up for lost time at Workington Reds.

The teenager has started a month’s loan at Borough Park after returning from a pre-season injury.

Leslie, 18, was awarded six-month terms by the Cumbrians in the summer.

He made his Reds debut as a substitute in their NPL Division One West victory over Market Drayton Town.

And Beech said of the former youth team star’s loan move: “It’s important for him to get game time.

“He got a bad whack on his ankle and ended up missing a lot of pre-season which would have been the perfect time for me to have a better look at him.

“He’s in a situation where he needs to catch up with his fitness and he needs to show me that he’s got the potential to be better than Jack Armer.

“It’s so difficult for young lads, so it’s important he gets the opportunity to play. He’s still train with us and we’ll see what happens.”

Reds are top of the table after a fifth straight win on Saturday.

Their boss Chris Willcock, speaking on BBC Radio Cumbria after the game, said of Leslie: "I thought he freshened the midfield up.

"I thought we were looking a bit leggy at that stage and we needed a bit of youthful exuberance.

"He did very well. There were one or two situations where he could have done better, having got into some good areas, but that's his lack of experience.

"He did well, came on and contributed like we asked him to for the latter stages of the game."

Leslie could be involved again when Reds go to Trafford tonight.