Academy manager Alan Moore with reaction to the Barnsley FA Cup game
Academy manager Alan Moore gave us his reaction to Tuesday night’s FA Youth Cup fixture.
“We asked the lads before the game to go out there and give 100% and to make sure they were proud of what they did,” he said. “They did that to a man because they’ve done everything we asked of them. It was just a small bit of quality in the end which has cost us.
“Goals change games and they got their equaliser at a really good time. All we asked was for 100% commitment and for them to give it their best shot. They put everything they had into this performance and we’ll take that every day.”
“Our goal was a good one and Connor [Hammell] does that on a regular basis,” he told us. “He has a great left foot and we actually expected him to score his second one late in the game. It was a great save from the keeper in the end but it’s a technique he has practiced a lot over the years.
“He’s scored from those situations on a couple of occasions this season because he can put the ball where he wants to. The good thing is that he has a lot more to his game as well.”
“The pleasing thing from the overall performance is that we’ve gone up against a category 2 side and we’ve acquitted ourselves well,” he commented. “There is a £500,000 funding gulf between the categories and that obviously allows them to have more coaching staff and to get more contact time with their players.
“As I said to our group at the end of the game, they couldn’t have given us any more. I think Barnsley knew it was going to be a test and they showed us a lot of respect. They’ve got their goals but we had more shots and corners and we created more going forward. It was just a bit of quality in the final third which proved to be the difference.”
“The key message for them before kick off was to go out there and enjoy it,” he said. “I wanted them to look at there team mates and ask if they trusted the man next to them. They all covered for each other and we didn’t have any players who got stuck in the headlights. You expect it to happen but the lads coped and did themselves proud.
“It’s a totally different atmosphere with the build up, playing on the main pitch, being in the first team dressing room and playing under the lights, so it’s a big night for them. They coped particularly well in the first half and we just wanted to get into half time and talk about how to build on a lead. We got the message onto the pitch about how long was left and that’s where we needed to see the game management.
“They were devastated in the dressing room, as you’d expect, but they had no need to be. We are all very proud of them and they just needed a bit of luck to go their way.
“What we have now is a massive adrenalin rush which the lads have experienced to get them through this fixture. They’ll now suffer a massive adrenalin dump, which is a natural reaction, and they’ll have to get through that. It now comes down to how they recover for the game against Bury on Saturday. We’ll check their heart rate monitors and I would fully expect the readings to be through the roof.”
United - Eccles, Rudd (Robson, 81), Douglas, Marshall, Pearson, Moyes (Bradbury, 75), Quigley (Taylor, 77), White, Elliott, Hammell, Blackburn. Subs - Fowler, Brown.
Goal – Hammell (15)
Attendance - 167
Next up - United v Bury, Saturday 8 November, Creighton Rugby Club, kick off 11am