Norwich City’s U18s pull out of Ely City friendly

Injury concerns to some of Alex Neil's first team squad have led to the cancellation of Tuesday's fr

Injury concerns to some of Alex Neil's first team squad have led to the cancellation of Tuesday's friendly at Ely City on a busy night for Norwich City. Picture: Jasonpix - Credit: Jason Dawson

Norwich City's Under-18s have been forced to cancel their scheduled Tuesday friendly at Thurlow Nunn Premier Division Ely City, with Ely boss Brady Stone citing 'injury concerns' to senior players as the reason for the Canaries' late call-off.

Alex Neil's squad travel to Lowestoft Town on Tuesday for their first public appearance of pre-season, while the development squad is scheduled to play Dulwich Hamlet on the same night.

The likes of Alex Tettey, Jonny Howson, Michael Turner and Russell Martin did not feature on Saturday against Walsall, in a behind-closed-doors friendly at St George's Park, after which Neil said those with 'minor knocks' were left out as a precaution at Burton.

Ex-King's Lynn defender Stone admits the late cancellation is a blow to his non league side, who were looking forward to hosting the Championship club with plans for 11 mascots from the Ely City Crusaders, a match between the under-eights and Norwich's player development centre and a cheque presentation to the 'Little Miracles' charity.

'They had three friendlies; the first team away to Lowestoft, a mixed team playing elsewhere and us playing their FA Youth Cup team,' Stone told the Cambridge News. 'But they had a few first-team players suffer injuries and called up some of the youngsters, and because we were the third game they had to pull out as they didn't have enough players. It's disappointing because we were expecting a big crowd and a lot of people were talking about it, but unfortunately these things happen.'

Stone's players also miss out on a key pre-season tune-up.

'Because it was such short-notice, it doesn't give us time to arrange another game,' he said. 'We'd planned for six friendlies and now we've only got five, so it puts us behind in pre-season.'

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