Young Dons set off on long trip to North East
AFC Wimbledon Under-18s this morning set off on their trip to Newcastle for tomorrow night’s FA Youth Cup tie – and Academy Manager Jeremy Sauer believes the squad will once again do the club proud.
The young Dons continue preparations for the match at St James’ Park with a session at Middlesbrough’s training ground this afternoon, before heading onto a hotel for an overnight stay.
Speaking before boarding the coach, Jeremy said that interest from supporters in the FA Youth Cup tie has created a unique atmosphere among the squad and academy staff.
“It has been a real buzz since the Watford game,” said Jeremy. “It’s been unbelievable for the boys. Alfie Egan got himself on the front cover of the match day programme, which was amazing, and Twitter has gone crazy with interest from fans. Some of the boys have even had fans asking them for their autographs! Fans have been congratulating us a lot and there is a buzz about the whole thing. It feels like we are doing the club proud and I know the boys will do exactly the same again tomorrow.
“If you compare us to other Under-18 groups we have a lot of talent, but we’ve also got a squad with massive spirit. They look after each other, they are responsible, well organised and take ownership of their learning. They are a real together group. For them to have this opportunity to develop a new milestone in the academy’s history is spot-on. There’s nothing to lose and the boys have prepared well. They will give everything they have got and you just never know what might happen.
“We’ve had conversations about where we have come from. Some of these boys, for example Reece Williams-Bowers, have been with us since Under-8s and when I started coaching at the club. Seeing Reece, who scored the winning penalty at Vicarage Road, and others progress has been fantastic. Back when I started we trained on a little field in South Wimbledon and boys were turning up in Chelsea and Man United kits. The progress of our academy has been unbelievable and for our Under-18s to be playing at St James’ Park is a fantastic achievement.”
.FA Youth CupTo read our preview of the game with Academy Head of Coaching Mark Robinson, click on
Entry prices are just £3 for adults and £1 concessions for the match at Newcastle United.
We have a limited number of places left on the supporters’ coach for tomorrow (£27 return). The coach departs from opposite South Wimbledon tube station at 11.00 am and from the Cherry Red Records Stadium at 11.30 am. Contact 020 8547 3528 to make a booking.