EDS & Academy

City cruise into last-32 of FA Youth Cup

CAPTAIN FANTASTIC: Doyle celebrates his stunning opener.
FA Youth Cup
FA Youth Cup
Thu 19 Dec
Manchester City's Under-18s secured a deserved 3-0 FA Youth Cup victory over Swansea City at the Academy Stadium

Spectacular strikes from Tommy Doyle and Jayden Braaf, added by a composed finish from James McAtee secured our progression into the fourth round of the competition.

Doyle’s opener came from a direct free-kick, as he powered the ball in expertly just before the interval.

Individual brilliance from Braaf doubled our lead as he curled in an unstoppable shot just after the hour mark, before substitute McAtee added a third late on to seal a fine display from our youngsters.

What happened

Gareth Taylor’s side started the game full of confidence, knocking the ball around accurately in the opening exchanges.

The visitors were well organised and defended compactly, but the first chance of the game fell to us in the eighth minute. 

A looping Doyle corner was not dealt with by Swansea goalkeeper Lewis Webb and the ball fell to centre-back Finley Burns, who headed over from ten yards out.

Our Academy outfit remained patient and continued to dominate possession.

Neat play on the right flank from Braaf resulted in the winger firing in an inviting cross, which was met by Morgan Rogers at the back post, but his first-time effort cannoned back off the crossbar. 

Just before the half-hour mark, it was Rogers again who came close to finding the opener. Swift build up play from Lewis Fiorini and Braaf resulted in the wide man drilling in another dangerous cross, but the stretching Rogers could only divert the ball wide from eight yards. 

It was all City, but when the visitors won the ball back, they struck at lightening pace. Josh Thomas was sent racing through and finished calmly past James Trafford, but the linesman’s flag was up for offside.

With two minutes left until the break, Ben Knight was brought down just outside the 18-yard box. Skipper Doyle stepped up and whipped the ball into the top corner beyond the sprawling Webb to hand us a deserved advantage at the interval. 

We emerged from the break with the same attacking intensity as in the first period and we threatened to double our lead immediately as Knight blasted just wide from the edge of the box. 

Minutes later, the visitors showed their potency on the counter again, with Thomas finishing well beyond Trafford, only to see the linesman’s flag up for offside again. 

With the clock just ticking over the hour mark, we found our second in spectacular fashion. Braaf picked up the ball on the right flank, cut in onto his left foot and accurately curled the ball into the bottom left corner. 

It should have been three with ten minutes remaining as Braaf’s mazy run resulted in McAtee racing through on goal, but his effort sailed wide.

McAtee got his goal shortly after, tapping in from close range to complete a great evening’s work.

What it means

City advance into the last-32 of the FA Youth Cup, where we will host Aston Villa. The date for the fixture is yet to be confirmed. 

How we lined up

James Trafford started as the goalkeeper, shielded by a back four of Conrad Egan-Riley, Rowan McDonald, Finley Burns and Joshua Wilson-Esbrand. Lewis Fiorini and skipper Tommy Doyle operated in midfield, whilst Jayden Braaf and Morgan Rogers provided the width. Cole Palmer and Ben Knight paired up in attack. 

What next 

Our Under-18s now have a lengthy Christmas break and will next be in action on Saturday 11thJanuary 2020 away to Newcastle United in the U18 Premier League. Kick-off is scheduled for 11:00 GMT. 

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