Youth Cup night on the Turf
Three days ago we beat Bournemouth at home in the Premier League but tonight it is the youth team who will be gracing Turf Moor when we face Bradford City in the 3rd round of the FA Youth Cup.
It’s just a few days more than a year since we last played in the competition when, despite goals from Khius Metz and Josh Dolling, we could only draw 2-2 against the Metropolitan Police and then went out 6-5 in a penalty shoot out.
I think many of us expected a big win, similar to the 7-0 win we had five years ago at Boston United. We then went on to beat all of Ipswich, West Brom and Fulham to reach the semi-finals. Since then we’ve had two 3rd round ties against Manchester United, winning one and losing one. and in 2014 we beat AFC Wimbledon 2-1 with goals from Ntumba Massanka and Brad Jackson.
Although our youth department had been run into the ground, losing to the Met Police was a big shock and if it helped in forcing the departures of those running the department then it was perhaps, to an extent, worth the embarrassment.
For some of our players it will be a first chance to play on the Turf and it will certainly be a first for a familiar figure on the touchline. Michael Duff’s last home appearance was in December last year when he played alongside Michael Keane in a 4-0 hammering of Charlton. Tonight it will be his debut as a coach having taken over the youths ahead of this season.
The team are having a better season too. We’ve won six of the twelve league games played so far and we’ve certainly recovered from the hiccup in September and October when we lost three successive games. Since losing at Walsall on 1st October we’ve won four and drawn one of our league games, the most recent of which was a 4-3 win at Wigan last Thursday when we came from 2-0 behind after 14 minutes to win 4-3.
Duff accepts that it will be something new for the players and said: “I am sure some will embrace it and for some it might be a shock. But as long as they play well and do themselves justice, and don’t let the occasion get the better of them, that’s what we are looking for.”
Our opponents Bradford City, also members of the Youth Alliance League but in the North East section, have already won through two rounds to reach this stage, beating Hartlepool and Boston, both at Valley Parade.
Burnley will select from: Connor King, Marcel Wusiewicz, Billy Grogan, James Clarke, Oliver Younger, Scott Wilson, Leighton Egan, Ali Koiki, Kwasinkosi Mpofu, Miles Fenton, Mark Howarth, Tyler Shrimpton, Olatunde Bayode, Tristan Jumeau, Dwight McNeil, Nashé Chakwana, RJ Pingling, Tommy Wood.
Tonight’s game kicks off at 7 p.m. with the Bob Lord Stand open to supporters. Tickets must be purchased from the ticket office windows ahead of kick off and are prices at £4 adults, £2 concessions and £1 for all season ticket holders.Share this page :