Fleetwood Town’s under 18s look to book their place in the second round of the FA Youth Cup when they travel to West Yorkshire to face Guiseley on Tuesday night.
Nathan Rooney’s side won their first league game of the season at the weekend as they beat local rivals Blackpool 1-0 on Saturday.
Guiseley set the tie up with a 3-1 win over Shildon, where a hat trick from Albert Ibrahimi helped the National League side recover from a goal down to progress.
Town boss Rooney says…
“Last year we lost to Chester at this stage and they’re a very similar level to Guiseley.
“The Youth Cup is a test of character for the boys. We test them daily on the pitch but it’s a mental test in the Youth Cup, so they just need to focus on winning the game and getting themselves into the next round.
“The lads are excited for tomorrow night, but they’ve got to treat it as just another game otherwise emotions will run higher than usual.
“On paper the levels are there but if they can match our work rate and endeavour it will be a proper cup tie.
“We need our lads to perfect their way of playing and we should be able to get on top with our technical ability.”
Town have no fresh injury concerns and Rooney says his side are as good as they can be ahead of the trip. A few of the 16-year-olds in the squad will be making the trip across the Pennines.
Rooney could welcome back goalkeeper Billy Crellin to the squad after his U17 World Cup winning campaign with England.
One to watch…
Ibrahimi’s hat trick in the last qualifying round was the Guiseley strikers’s second so far this season. He capped it with a 30-yard strike which nestled in the top left corner.
This time last year…
At this stage of the competition one year ago, Fleetwood travelled to National League outfit Chester. A late free kick from just outside the area condemned the Cod Army to a disappointing 1-0 defeat at the hands of lower league opposition.
Nine years ago…
On Wednesday 5 November 2008, Fleetwood made their first appearance in the FA Youth Cup. A Conference North side back then, Town played host to League One opposition – much like Guiseley will on Tuesday night – as Oldham Athletic’s youth team made the trip to Highbury Stadium. Preston North End forward Tom Barkhuizen was on the bench for Town that night as the visitors ran out 1-0 winners.