TV incentive for Norwich City in crunch tie at Everton

Norwich City Under-18s coach Neil Adams pits his wits against former Everton team-mate Kevin Sheedy

Norwich City Under-18s coach Neil Adams pits his wits against former Everton team-mate Kevin Sheedy in tonight's FA Youth Cup quarter-final at Goodison Park. - Credit: Archant copyright 2012

City Under-18s coach Neil Adams pits his wits against one of his former Everton team-mates in tonight's FA Youth Cup quarter-final at Goodison Park (7pm).

The Toffees' academy side is coached by former Republic of Ireland international Kevin Sheedy, with whom fellow winger Adams spent three years on Merseyside.

'We were team-mates during some very good times at Everton in that championship-winning side of 1987,' he recalled.

'He is a good friend of mine. He was diagnosed with cancer last year but is now hopefully in remission. We've kept in touch, I've seen him through coaching this season and he's a good lad – but we'll be looking to put one over each other.'

Everton have a head start, having already registered 4-2 and 3-0 wins over the Canaries in the FA Premier Academy League this season. They knocked out Arsenal to reach the last eight.

'Everton are a good side. We've played them twice this year and they were better than us on both occasions,' said Adams.

'They are strong from one to 11 but we have done our homework on them and we are a good side too and they know that when we play well, they will have cause to worry about us.

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'It will be two good sides who like to play football.

'We have been in very good form since the turn of the year and had a brilliant win at Newcastle on Saturday.'

There is an added bonus for tonight's winners, who will visit Nottingham Forest in the semi-final first leg next Wednesday, in that ITV4 will have live coverage of both legs of the semis.

'It's fantastic that these games will get a national audience and good that the TV companies are showing an interest,' said Adams. 'That's another incentive for these lads – they can all be TV stars.

'We regard the FA Youth Cup as our biggest games of the season. We know from playing at Carrow Road, even if there are not many in the ground, it's a big occasion and there will be nerves and apprehension. Some nerves are a good thing, a bit of a flutter in the belly, but the key is not to let it affect our performance.

'They're really looking forward to it. It will be the biggest game most of them have ever played but we've prepared well and they're looking sharp and lively.

'We have a full squad to pick from. Harry Barker has played two or three games now and has recovered from his broken foot.'

Much of the attention has been on City's 18-year-old Murphy twins, Josh and Jacob, who have played for England Under-18s and Under-19s this season and been awarded professional contracts to 2015.

'They deserve all the plaudits that have come their way, and their contracts, and the rest of the team are pleased for them. There is no animosity or jealousy,' said Adams.