Ian McGuckin has admitted there is real excitement in the Pools camp as the Youth Team travel to South Shields on Friday night to battle for a place in Round Three of the FA Youth Cup (7pm kick-off).
A surprise NLFA defeat at home to Guiseley on Wednesday has only intensified the determination to make progress in the FA Youth Cup – with the winners of Friday’s tie set for a trip to Fulham.
McGuckin was left annoyed by his team’s midweek defeat but has said that it’s perfect to have another game so soon to enable to his players to put that disappointment behind them quickly.
“It’s a big game – we’re looking forward to it,” he told us.
“When you’re winning you want the games to come thick and fast, and when you are beaten you want another game quickly so we’re pleased to have this fixture upon us so soon.
“There’s a big carrot for the lads to know they could play Fulham in the next round and that’s what these competitions are all about – but there is work to be done.
“South Shields are a well-drilled team who play football the right way but we’ll be prepared for them so we’re really looking forward to what I’m sure will be a good, competitive game.”
Pools have prospered in the FA Youth Cup so far this term, thumping Seaham Red Star and Stockport County before pulling off a battling win away at Accrington Stanley in the last round.
Shields will hope to end that run at Mariners Park tonight, with the home side bidding to reach the Third Round of the competition for the first time in their history.
Admission to tonight’s game is just £3 for adults and £1 for concessions so we’re hoping as many fans as possible can get along to support the youngsters in action.