EDS & Academy

Taylor: City excited by FA Youth Cup incentive

UP FOR THE CUP: Manchester City Under-18s boss Gareth Taylor says the young Blues are relishing the prospect of Monday's FA Youth Cup semi-final
Gareth Taylor has urged Manchester City’s Under-18s to embrace the challenge and take another step towards creating their own piece of history in Monday night’s FA Youth Cup semi-final at home to West

The young Blues have already tasted silverware this season, having lifted the Under-18s Premier League Cup with a 1-0 win in the final away at Middlesbrough earlier this month.

Now manager Taylor wants his charges to rise to the occasion once more when they tackle a talented West Brom outfit under the Academy Stadium lights.

City boast a proud record in the FA Youth Cup, and we were finalists for three years in a row between 2015 and 2017.

However, the Blues haven’t tasted success in youth football’s most prestigious domestic competition since 2008 – a fact Taylor has reminded the City squad about.

“We haven’t won the FA Youth Cup for 11 years, so we’ve spoken to the players about the opportunity we have to create a little bit of history, and the guys are really looking forward to the challenge on Monday,” said Taylor.

READ: Cups bring best out of young Blues, says Ben Knight

WATCH: City U18s 3-0 Man United | U18 Premier League Cup highlights

“An experience like winning the Under-18 Premier League Cup breeds confidence. 

“We’ve said all along that the two competitions have gone hand in hand with one another. One has driven the other one.

“We’ve had success recently but there is now a lot of hard work to do if we are to overcome what is a strong opponent.

“West Brom have taken a few scalps and some of their lads play at Under-23 level on a regular basis so it’s going to be really tough and we are not underestimating them by any means.”

It’s only the second home tie in the Blues’ FA Youth Cup journey which, to date, has taken in trips to Clevedon, Derby and Bournemouth as well as a fourth-round clash at home to Nottingham Forest.

And if City were in need of any extra incentive, there is the lure of a home draw in the final against Liverpool, who overcame Watford in their semi-final earlier this month.

WATCH: How the Premier League Under 18s Cup was won...

“It’s nice to be at home. We’ve been out on our travels quite a bit in this competition in both and it’s another opportunity on our home patch with the knowledge that there would be a home fixture in the final,” Taylor added.

“This is where you find out about yourself and this is where you find out about the players as well.

“People are different in terms of how they handle tense situations, but we have to follow the processes that we put in place to give us the best possible chance of doing well.

“We want to show our style of football and our energy possession-based approach and we are excited about the game.

 “West Brom are a very good team and it’s going to be tough, but we are really looking forward to the challenge.”

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