'Wembley, Reserves and a derby – what a week it is!'
Grimsby Town Youth boss Adam Smith gives his weekly round-up on the fortunes of the club's Under-18s:
IT'S set to be another busy week for our Youth-team lads – with a potential Reserves outing, a local derby and a day-out at Wembley to fit in!
Our boys head into it full of confidence following Saturday's 2-1 win over Bradford City's youngsters.
The match was played in pretty horrendous conditions at Cheapside. The pitch was very wet from the night before, but not unplayable, and then just before we kicked off the heavens opened and it was non-stop for the next hour and a half.
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We had one of our strongest XI's out, barring a couple of injuries to our two left-backs, Josh Morrall and Chris Burgess.
We started reasonably well, but lo and behold we found ourselves 1-0 down again from Bradord's first attack, after 15 minutes.
One of their players broke from midfield and went through unchallenged before slotting the ball under our keeper.
It seems to be a habit for us at the moment – we start games well but then we have a lapse of concentration and fall behind.
People say goals change games and so it proved. Bradford got on top for 15-20 minutes and looked the better side.
Fortunately, we hit back with a pretty well taken goal from Caine Winfarrah, who is in excellent goalscoring form.
Then we started to get back on top again. Bradford had a couple of half chances but we created four or five really good opportunities and eventually Sam Loughran scored to make it 2-1.
Towards the end, either side could have added to their tally as it got a little bit end-to-end and frantic as the conditions deteriorated.
That's two draws and a win from the last three games, so we've given ourselves a platform to finish the season on.
We've lost to Bradford a couple of times, including our exit in the FA Youth Cup, so it was nice to play them home and get the three points at last.
The Reserves are away at Mansfield tomorrow afternoon, where I expect a number of our second-years will again be involved.
Then, on Thursday afternoon we're playing Scunthorpe United's youngsters at Winterton.
We'll have another young side out there, with some of the Under-16s getting another chance to impress.
That just leaves the 'small' matter of Wembley!
I'm pretty lucky, I'm heading south on Friday with the first-team, while the Youth lads will make their own way down on Sunday to watch the game.
It will be a great day-out for them – to see their first-team in action on such a big stage.
And it should give everybody connected with the football club a huge lift and something to aspire to for the future.