Rotherham United’s U18s are preparing for FA Youth Cup action this evening as they travel to face Reading at the Select Car Leasing Stadium in the Third Round.
The Millers youngsters go into battle with the Royals in what will be their first action of this season’s competition with the clash in Berkshire set to take place this evening.
Thursday night’s hosts have overcome Oxford City and Forest Green to earn themselves the tie against the Millers, with Academy Manager Richard Hairyes once again looking forward to seeing his players take centre stage at Reading’s first team stadium.
“It’ll be a brilliant occasion for the lads. We’re almost at full strength, with the exception of our goalkeeper who is suspended,” he told www.themillers.co.uk.
“It’s a blow for him to miss the game but what it does do is present an opportunity for someone else.
“We know we’re going into the game as underdogs against a Category One Academy but we do think that we can go there and cause them problems if we stick to what we’ve been doing."
“We’ll approach it like we would any other game. We’ll just remind them of what we’re good at and stick to what we know. That’s our gameplan and nothing will change regarding that.
“I think if we stick to what we’ve been doing and the lads take the information onboard that we’ve been giving them, we’ll give ourselves a good chance.”
Lead Professional Development Phase Coach Gavin Atherton echoed those comments insisting that spirits within the Rotherham United camp are high following some positive results in recent outings in the Youth Alliance League.
“Coming off the back of two wins and topping our Youth Alliance Cup group, the lads are heading into this game in really good spirits,” he added.
“The football we’re playing at the minute gives us the confidence that we can go down there and give Reading a real game."
“We’re really aggressive out of possession and we think that we can give them one or two things to think about.
“The players that we have at the top end of the pitch give us everything chance and I think if we can get at them early doors, there’s no reason why we can’t get a result.
“I’m really looking forward to it - as are the lads – I think it’s going to be a really entertaining game against two teams who like to attack.”