Under 18s head coach Ben Wilkinson wants his City youngsters to maintain focus ahead of Saturday’s Under 18 Premier League Cup quarter final at home to Tottenham (11.30am).

Saturday’s match, which takes place at the Academy Stadium, marks the start of arguably the biggest week of the season yet for Wilkinson’s cohort.

Our Under 18s return to the Academy Stadium next Tuesday to play host to Fleetwood Town in the fifth round of the FA Youth Cup.

That’s then followed by a crucial league game at home to Middlesbrough next Saturday.

City are currently in a rich vein of form, having opened up a 10 point lead at the top of the Under 18 Premier League North.

We also recorded impressive wins against Blackburn, Leicester and Norwich in our Under 18 Premier League Cup group campaign.


And with the Club having won the Under 18 Premier League Cup in both 2019 and 2020, the head coach says there is also a hunger to try and maintain that proud record of success.

“We have a great record in the competition and hopefully we can continue that this season,” Wilkinson said.

“We have put ourselves in a decent position coming through the group stages with three really good wins.

“So, we are really excited about the game and really excited about the week in terms of two knockout games.

“That’s the environment we want to try and get the players in as much as possible because they are competitive, and it gives them to step up under a bit more pressure knowing that if you don’t win the game then you are out if the competition.

“We are quite pleased with where we are at in terms of our form over the past few weeks and the performances.

“We were a bit inconsistent before Christmas but I think we have really grown since then in terms in terms of the level of focus, concentration, intensity, competitiveness aggression and it has really showed in the performances and the results.

“So as a group we’re in a really good place on that regard and if we can continue that over the next week then we’ll put ourselves in a good position.”

City and Spurs last met in the Under 17 Premier League Cup final last April, with City running out convincing 6-0 victors and a number of players from both sides that day could line up again on Saturday.

Regardless of who lines up for the opposition however, the head coach knows it will present a challenging test.

“Spurs are a talented team with some really talented individual players, especially in the forward areas and they are very capable of scoring,” Wilkinson added.

“Defensively, we will have to be really switched on and show good levels of concentration and defend with real aggression about us.

“We have watched their last few games and we know they are a real threat going forward so that is something we will have to concentrate on.

“But as a group we’re in a really good place and if we can continued that over the next week then we’ll put ourselves in a good position.”