Academy coach prepares young Royals for fifth round trip
Royals Under-18 coach, David Dodds, is expecting a tough test in the fifth round of the FA Youth Cup on Friday when the young Royals travel up to the Black Country to face Wolves at Molineux. Our first team will meet Wolves at Madejski Stadium on Saturday in the Championship, but not before our U18s travel to meet their Midlands counterparts the previous evening.
After victory over Chelsea on Saturday in the U18s Premier League the Royals have secured a place in Group One for the next phase of the competition and now turn their focus to a difficult fixture in the Youth Cup.
Reading progressed to the fifth round after coming from behind in impressive fashion away to Fulham, eventually securing a 3-1 victory. Wolves ran out 5-0 winners over Met Police in their fourth round tie to set up the meeting, a game which Dodds viewed in person.
“We went up to see Wolves in their win over Met Police,” said Dodds. “Their front four players looked very impressive and fluid in their movement and mobile so we are aware they could cause us some problems.”
Dodds admits the Royals have been preparing for their opposition and after a successful season so far, says the team will be approaching the game like any other fixture. But he also reiterated the importance of the Youth Cup in the development young players, and echoed his sentiments when asked about the experience the youngsters would get from playing at Molineux.
“We’ve been watching tapes of their games and have prepared our game plan accordingly. We’ve achieved our goal we set ourselves in the league at the beginning of the season, so now we want to see how far we can get in the Youth Cup - which is a great tournament.
“I’ve said before how important an experience I think the tournament is for the boys. Playing at Molineux will be another great trip for the lads and it will test them.
“Playing at these grounds I think gives them the closest experience to a first team debut that they can get. It’s a chance for us to see how they play under pressure, but we’re confident that if we play the way we can, we’ve got a good chance of progressing.”