With the COVID-19 pandemic having led to the cancellation of last season’s competition, tomorrow’s Academy Stadium encounter will be our first taste of European action at Under-19s level for almost two years.
As such it promises to be a whole new experience – both for head coach Brian Barry- Murphy who took charge of the EDS in the summer and his exciting group of young players.
On the domestic front, City have made a superb start to the new season. The reigning PL2 champions, we top the table after the first four games of the new season while we have also made a winning start to our Papa John’s Trophy campaign.
But for CJ Egan-Riley and Oscar Bobb, the chance to test ourselves against Europe’s elite young sides is a new challenge that has fired everyone’s imagination.
"After the international break we have got straight back into it with the league, the Papa John’s Trophy and the UEFA Youth League,” said Egan-Riley.
“That is a competition that we are all really looking forward to.
“We just need to keep pushing and working to win our games. We can definitely do that and I think we are only to get stronger.”
Norwegian winger Bobb admits he is equally enthused about the prospect of the UEFA Youth League, with City also facing French side Paris Saint-Germain and Belgium’s Club Brugge in the group stages.
“There are a lot of different things to play for this season – we’ve got the league obviously and the Papa John’s Trophy as well as the UEFA Youth League which is something we all can’t wait for,” Bobb added.
“I think we’re a team to look out for this year and that we can only go up from here.”
From his own perspective, head coach Barry-Murphy believes the challenge of pitting our wits against continental opposition is one that will only aid his players’ development and learning.
And he says it is a prospect that has helped enthuse everyone in the Academy.
“I think the level of challenge the young players are going to face is so contrasted in the UEFA Youth League,” said the City head coach.
“It’s an amazing experience for them and you can sense the excitement whenever the staff here or the players tell me about it.
“You can sense the excitement and how unique it is really.”
CITY+ subscribers will be able to watch the game live on our digital channels with the action getting underway at 3pm.
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