Youth Cup Shock In Order?
Coventry Sphinx manager John Woodward is hoping the luck of the underdog will help his side cause one of the great FA Youth Cup shocks on Wednesday evening.
The Midlands side have captured the imagination in this season's competition, winning their ties with Alvechurch, Belper, Tamworth and Eccleshall to continue their unbeaten run in all competitions.
Their reward for their Youth Cup exploits is a home clash with two-time European Champions Nottingham Forest - a classic David v Goliath tie.
'To be playing Nottingham Forest is a fabulous occasion for the whole club and for those players taking part it will be a memory they`ll keep forever,' said Woodward (pictured).
However, despite the interest surrounding the game, Woodward knows there is a match to be won.
'What we must do is prepare as we do for any other game,' he added. 'Obviously there will be a large crowd and distractions but we must remain focused and ensure we match Forest in every department. No one is expecting Sphinx to beat Nottingham Forest but as we`ve seen in the FA Cup down the years, everyone loves an underdog.'
The club are enjoying their spell in the limelight - the local media in Coventry have certainly caught The FA Youth Cup bug - but Woodward knows a stunning upset will keep the club's name in lights for a few weeks longer.
'The lads have been great and the performances have been outstanding at times,' said Woodward. 'The exposure that this cup run has had is great. The club is in the spotlight and long may it continue. The lads deserve the accolades they have had so far but the game with Forest is a chance to really make headlines.'
Coventry Sphinx Chief Executive Dannie Cahill (pictured) is expecting an electric atmosphere when the two teams do battle, but insisted that whatever the result, the young stars have done themselves proud.
'To say how proud we are of our current crop of youth players is an understatement. John Woodward and his players have achieved something very special and it is a testament to their hard work and commitment that they can experience such a momentous occasion.
'We are in the shop window where potential sponsors may well be interested in putting in some well needed financial support into this great club of ours.'