EDS & Academy

Vicens: We’ll step up to the occasion

Vicens: We’ll step up to the occasion
Carlos Vicens is confident his players can handle the expectations that being holders of the FA Youth Cup brings ahead of our Fourth Round clash with Everton.

Our Young Blues ended a 12-year wait to lift the famous trophy with a pulsating 3-2 victory over Chelsea in last season’s final, and kicked off their defence with a 6-1 triumph over Birmingham.

And while Vicens is under no illusions about the pressure City have on their shoulders, he believes it’s simply part and parcel of being successful, and that the players will revel in the occasion.

“As Man City, you enter every competition willing to be the best team in that competition,” he said.

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“You face every game knowing that, not just in this competition but in every competition, the belief is the same.

“The players start their development understanding that when you wear this shirt you enter every game feeling a bit of pressure.

“It’s something you learn to live with if you play or work for Manchester City. Obviously this is an opportunity for us to do something really big, to retain the title.

“We go into this addition with renewed energy and willing to do very well but knowing we need to take it game by game.”

WATCH: City U18s 6-1 Birmingham U18s: FA Youth Cup highlights

Up next for our Under-18s on their quest to retain the FA Youth Cup is the visit of Everton to the Academy Stadium.

Only goal difference keeps the Toffees out of the top five in the U-18 Premier League and City were pushed to their absolute limits in September’s 2-2 draw.

And Vicens expects his players to be faced by a similarly stern test this time around.

He remarked: “(I expect) a tough game, a tough and tough game. Obviously both clubs know each other quite well and both teams are doing okay.

“It’s an opportunity for both teams to progress in a competition that we both want to be doing well in.

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“Everton are always intense, always going for you, and they have good players so it’ll be a tough and tight game I think.

"It’s a competition where not necessarily the best team goes through.

“You have a better chance if you play well and have a good performance but a mistake, a bad decision or an unexpected situation can put you out of the competition.

“That’s why you need to be extra focused and knowing that you can’t even think about the next round, you just try to perform to your best, that’s the target.”

WATCH: Highlights: City 3-2 Chelsea

Our clash at the Academy Stadium should be a fascinating tie, and one that both sets of players will enjoy being a part of.

And Vicens has highlighted what progressing in the FA Youth Cup would mean to him and his players.

He said: “It’s probably the most prestigious youth competition in this country and we all know that.

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“Everybody has memories of previous editions from 10, 15, 20 years ago, finals we’ve played and famous players who have played in the competition.

“It’s a very exciting competition with a big tradition in this country and obviously you feel this excitement about being involved and making your name when you play it.

“It means a lot, it’s one of the things you make in your calendar in pre-season.”

City’s FA Youth Cup clash with Everton is available to watch live with a CITY+ subscription.

You can sign up to a 30-day free trial, after which CITY+ is just £1.99GBP / month.

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