Everton boss Dave Moyes is confident his rookie youngsters will cope with being thrown into the Premiership spotlight.
Moyes had six teenagers on the bench for the defeat to Blackburn and 17-year-old Jack Rodwell making his full debut, while Jose Baxter, at 16 years and 196 days, came on as an impressive late substitute to become Everton's youngest-ever senior player.
Moyes said: "It is a lot to ask a 16-year-old to come on and change a game but we have a history of that at Everton with Wayne Rooney and James Vaughan.
"The two lads we did put on, Rodwell and Baxter, did really well and we are very pleased with them.
"But it is not the right time to be playing either of them. We would rather use them coming into a side that is playing well and winning.
"These boys need time to develop. Sometimes, though, the first team is where that happens.
"There was a lot of pressure on Jose when he came on, and he did get a big build-up. But maybe Everton fans need something to cheer and support.
"Everton fans needed some good news. And at the moment that is Rodwell and Baxter. We hope they have the mentality to cope, we will do our best to protect them and use them at the right moments.
"It probably wasn't the right moment this time, but we had little choice. Nevertheless, they got on and showed what they can do and this can help their future development."