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Back in the 2011/12 season, we reached the semi-finals of the FA Youth Cup, but only once since have we reached the 5th round and that was five years ago when we beat Wimbledon and Cardiff City before going out at Nottingham Forest.

Tonight, we have the opportunity to reach the 5th round again when we travel to Mansfield for our 4th round tie, the reward for beating Curzon Ashton in the 3rd round. We go there in a decent run of form although, to be fair, games have been hard to come by recently.

Having been beaten by league leaders Wigan on 7th December, we’ve played only three games. First came that win at Curzon Ashton and we’ve since beaten both Hull and Barnsley 3-2 having held 3-0 leads. The most recent of those games was 12 days ago.

Although they rarely play in the youth team, both Lewis Richardson and Joe McGlynn were in the team that won in the last round and only injury kept out Ne-Jai Tucker (pictured). Only the latter was involved in Monday’s under-23 game although they do have a game tomorrow and that could keep them out tonight.

Mansfield came into the competition in the 1st round and had beaten Doncaster and Rotherham in the first two. They beat Doncaster 4-2 at home and followed that up with a 4-2 win against Rotherham, again at home, after extra time.

It was at home again in round three when they trailed QPR 1-0 going into stoppage time at the end of the game. But they equalised with a stunning 40-yard shot in the fourth minute added on and then went on to win 3-1 in extra time.

So, tonight’s game is their fourth at home in the competition this season and kick off tonight at Field Mill is 7 p.m. For anyone wishing to attend, admission is £3 adults and £1 concessions. It is cash on the turnstiles with the lower tier of the Ian Greaves Stand open for the game.

For the winners tonight, it is a home tie in the next round against West Brom who beat Middlesbrough 4-1 earlier in the month to win through.

The 5th round draw

Mansfield or Burnley v West Brom
Bournemouth v Millwall
Blackburn or Charlton v Oxford or Preston
Arsenal v Brighton
Manchester City v Fulham
Wigan v Birmingham
Chelsea v Wolves or Crystal Palace
Norwich or Manchester United v Leeds

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