‘There’s nothing to be scared of, they’re very good players’ – City U18s aim for fast start against Newcastle in FA Youth Cup
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Getting off to a strong start will be one of the focuses for Norwich City Under-18s as they continue their pursuit of FA Youth Cup glory at Carrow Road on Wednesday night.
David Wright's squad have played both of their matches at their home stadium so far this season, bouncing back with four goals in 10 minutes to beat Barnsley 4-1 in the third round and then coming from behind twice to beat Derby 4-2 after extra-time in a dramatic fourth round battle.
Tomorrow it is Newcastle making the trip to Norfolk, with a home tie against Bury or Birmingham up for grabs in the quarter-finals.
'It's definitely a big occasion for the boys,' Wright said. 'From all the games we've been in, me and Alan (Neilson, assistant), we don't need to rev it up at all, the boys rev it up themselves, and it being at Carrow Road it's very emotional in terms of playing on stages like this and quite a lot of them are inexperienced in that sense.
'But the further we go in the competition, the more experience they get, the more comfortable they get. So I would expect as we move forward that instead of waiting 45 minutes to get going like we have done, the boys take responsibility individually and collectively from the first minute to really go and express themselves. Don't wait, there's nothing to be scared of, they're very good players, that's why they play for this football club.'
Right-back Jordan Thomas, who recently joined after leaving Huddersfield, is cup-tied and Wright is without winger Glenn Middleton after he joined Rangers.
'Glenn's a good player, he's moved on now and we've got plenty of other very good players in the squad,' the former Crewe defender continued. 'It's up to me and Alan now to make sure we concentrate on those boys, make sure we keep developing them and give them the best opportunity to move on to the under-23s and hopefully that end journey into our first team.'
With the draw for the semi-finals also made, City know they could face either Chelsea or Tottenham if they make it that far.
'We haven't really spoke to the boys about that,' Wright added. 'Me and Al look at the next game, so we won't concentrate on anything further than Newcastle.
'It's going to be a tough test and we need to make sure we do everything to get into the next round.'
• Tomorrow's game is a 7pm kick-off, with tickets priced at £3, see canaries.co.uk for further details