KEITH Curle said not enough of his fringe players took their opportunity as Latics slipped to a 3-2 defeat at home to Leeds United Under 21s in the Papa John's Trophy.

The head coach recognised the quality in the opposition camp, but was frustrated by the mistakes which contributed to the Premier League proteges scoring a first half penalty and two second half own goals.

Zak Dearnley scored his first of the season while Davis Keillor-Dunn added to Saturday's winner with a superb stoppage time strike, but it was not enough to salvage anything from the game.

"I try to take the positives" said Curle, who welcomed winger Jack Stobbs back into the side after over a month out with injury.

"It was another 90 minutes for Harrison (McGahey) which is always going to be good. Some of the other players it was an opportunity to get a competitive run-out which is what they need when they're not playing regularly.

"They (Leeds Under 21s) have got some good players, which you know they're going to have. The over-riding factor is we didn't the basics well, some of our decision making was poor, some of the things that we've highlighted that we want them to work on individually showed there is still work to be done.

"It was good to see Davis getting his scoring knack back, but the goals (conceded) are disappointing.

"But when you lose you've got to learn.

"For the younger players who played it was a good opportunity to learn.

"It doesn't matter who you're playing against, when you're on the fringes of the first team you've still got to be working hard.

"I thought we were flat in midfield - off the pace in midfield - and out run, which shows the mentality needs to change. You need to be ready. When you are on the fringes of the first team and waiting, when you get an opportunity, like tonight, you've got to be ready to take and I don't think enough players took them."

Curle did, however, described Stobbs' return as a big positive.

"Very much so," he said.

"He's been knocking at my door. He's desperate to play now."