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PREVIEW | Young Exiles travel to Tottenham Hotspur for FA Youth Cup third round

12 January 2021

Newport County AFC's young guns will be looking to carve out their own piece of cup history when they travel to Tottenham Hotspur's training centre on Tuesday afternoon.

The Exiles' under-18s have reached the FA Youth Cup third for the second consecutive campaign following a 3-2 extra-time victory over Brockenhurst in December. 

Declan Flanagan's side fell to a 3-1 defeat against Blackburn Rovers at this stage in last season's competition, but will be looking to go one better this term in north London.

Several of County's youngsters have enjoyed first-team exposure this season, with Aneurin Livermore, Callum Ryan-Phillips, Evan Ovendale, Harrison Bright, Joe Woodiwiss, Lewys Twamley, Ryan Hillier and Sonny Lewis all featuring in the Papa John's Trophy fixtures against Cheltenham Town, Norwich City and Plymouth Argyle.

The next generation can already be proud of their achievements after helping the club to this stage of the cup for only the second time, but Academy Manager Damien Broad says the youngsters have a game plan to cause an upset against Spurs, who welcome County for their first fixture in this year's competition.

"We have been looking at Tottenham’s clips and they are a very good team," said Broad.

"They have got some phenomenal players and, if you look at this weekend for example, they had a 16-year-old coming on for the first team and scoring.

"It’s testament to the work they are doing at Tottenham’s academy.

“They have got players in the English age groups and a very good academy, so we know it’s going to be difficult and we have a game plan that the lads have been working to.”

Michael Flynn has already shown the youngsters that there is a clear pathway from the youth team to the senior ranks, and Broad has been impressed with the players who have made the step up this term.

"We have seen a number of them feature for the first team already this season in the Cup competitions and it’s testament to the gaffer for giving them that opportunity.

"Some of our lads within those games didn’t look out of place and did very well on the night.

"We are a club that wants to develop academy players for our first team so that we see the benefits.

"Just being in the FA Youth Cup third round is just something that the academy isn’t used to.

"In the last couple of years, they have done that and it’s a great opportunity but one they fully deserved by getting to this stage."   

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