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Andy Dawson reacts to FA Youth Cup exit to holders Chelsea

15 December 2017

Professional Development Phase Coach Andy Dawson reacting to his side’s FA Youth Cup exit to holders Chelsea.

The side were a solitary goal down with 12 minutes to go, but ended up on the end of a 4-0 reverse as the hosts entered another gear as the Category One fitness and quality showed.


AD: I’m not too worried about the scoreline in the end if I’m totally honest. I would have been disappointed had it been 1-0, 4-0 or 2-1. I’m just disappointed we didn’t give a real true reflection of the way that we can play. At the end of the day, we were playing a top team in Chelsea who are quality in and out of possession and you have to be brave and you have to get onto the ball.

No matter who you play, you have to get onto the ball to have half a chance of hurting them and scoring a goal. I don’t think we worked hard enough as individuals to want to find space and receive the ball. That’s one thing we have done this season at our level. We have dominated teams, we have created chances and, although we need to be more clinical when we get them, we have dominated possession.

I would have said the same thing to the players whatever the score had ended up. They didn’t show what good players they are.


AD: I thought Adam (Kelsey) and the two centre-halves (Sam Lilley and Cameron Morfoot) stuck to their task very gamely, which we needed them to do. They’re a very attacking team, but it’s part of football to stay strong when you go one or two goals behind. It’s about learning the trade and you have to feel disappointments to learn. It’s difficult to learn if you’re always winning games.

At 2-0, we tried to change it with ten minutes to go, and we conceded straight away, which was disappointing. It was fully deserved, they’re a top team, they move the ball really well and have some top players. Full credit and congratulations go to them.


AD: It’s about our lads learning from the experience. They now know the levels that they need to get to, because they’ve just played against it. They’ve just played against one of the best under-18s teams in England and that’s the standard we need to be at. They know that and that’s what we’ll be trying to do. If that’s the one thing that they learn, that they’re not quite there yet, then so be it - that’s brilliant for me.

I said again though, they worked so hard to get to this stage. They were fantastic against Cambridge, they were fantastic against Long Eaton and we came up against one of the best teams in England and didn’t quite show what we’ve got and that’s the only


AD: No doubt from what I’ve seen tonight, they will go on and win the competition.

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