quote linkedin dugout

Academy News

Video 1 Gallery

FA Youth Cup final: Wilcox previews the tie

City U18s manager Jason Wilcox is full of confidence ahead of his side’s FA Youth Cup final first leg clash with Chelsea on Friday.

He said: “We're really looking forward to the game. I think it's a great occasion for everyone involved at the Club.

“We got to the final last year and the lads want to go one further this year and win the competition. 

“We're capable of winning. We've got formidable opponents in the form of Chelsea but I believe we can win. We're fully focused on our objective. 

“Chelsea have got a good record in the FA Youth Cup and they'll be labelled as the favourites. We don't mind that.

“I wouldn't say last year's defeat could be used as extra motivation. We've already played them this year and it was an extremely good game.”

A capacity crowd is expected at the Academy Stadium on Friday for the first leg and the U18s boss says that the players can’t wait to cross the white line and get started.

Wilcox also believes that the fans have a big part to play.

Jason commented: “The lads have been fantastic in training this week, they're ready to go now. The game can't come soon enough for them.

“It's going to be a great occasion. For me now, it's just a case of keeping them bubbling along and giving them little bits of information about what I expect from them and how Chelsea play.

“We want to make it a great occasion for the lads and I'd like to thank the fans that will be coming to the game.

“The supporters play a huge part in the development of players at this magnificent football club. “

City extended their unbeaten run at u18 level to 15 games last weekend with a 2-0 win against Liverpool and Wilcox believes that it down to the collective spirit within the group.

Wilcox stated: “I think the coach's job is to give them a reality check at times. I've certainly not mentioned anything about the 15 games unbeaten to them

“They're working extremely hard in training and the results have been fruits of that, really.

“For anyone who has watched them this year, they've played some unbelievable stuff at times and football at times that is beyond their years, which is credit to them.

“What we have got this year is a good collective spirit. In the last we've gone a goal down and things haven't been going great, but we've got characters in the team who can take the game by the scruff of the neck and get us back into the game.

“I've got full confidence in them. From the start of the season to now, they've worked extremely hard and now we've got to get over the line.”

Picture Special

FA Youth Cup: Training gallery

Academy News

Brahim: We need a good start

City U18s playmaker Brahim Diaz says a good start against Chelsea could be key to deciding the FA Youth Cup final…

Brahim is one of many players who could have a big influence on the two-legged final and the young Spaniard is adamant that City can’t afford a poor start against Chelsea on Friday.

Match Report

U18s make it 15 games unbeaten