Date for FA Youth Cup first round tie confirmed

Date for FA Youth Cup first round tie confirmed

The FA Youth Cup first round tie between South Shields and Stockport County will take place on Wednesday, November 3rd at 1st Cloud Arena. 

The match had originally been scheduled for Friday, November 5th, but has now been brought forward by two days.

It is sure to be a hugely anticipated clash after the young Mariners continued their fine run in the competition by seeing off York City in the final qualifying round.

They required penalties to beat the National League North side’s Academy, with Shields goalkeeper Callum Dobson proving to be the hero as he saved two spot-kicks in front of a crowd of 391.

It was a big moment for the side, after they were eliminated from the competition on penalties by Altrincham last season.

Academy manager Wess Brown was delighted with the character shown – and feels that will stand the players in good stead as they look to progress further and emulate the achievements of 2018-19 (second round) and 2019-20 (third round).

He said: “It’s not always great when it goes to penalties, because it’s a bit of a lottery.

“It was a good test for us because we went out of this competition on penalties last season, but a lot of lads put their hand up and wanted to take one, which was a great sign of their character.

“The FA Youth Cup is a great competition for the lads to learn and that experience of going to penalties will be integral for them going forward, despite what was a below-par performance.

“It’s great to be in the first round proper again, two years after we reached the third round, and hopefully we can take it at least one step further.”

Another strong gate is expected on Wednesday, with the three FA Youth Cup ties at 1st Cloud Arena so far this season having attracted a cumulative crowd of 1,070.

Dobson – who recovered from conceding a penalty during the 90 minutes against York – has no doubt as to the sort of role the fans can play.

He said: “It was an incredible moment for us to win the shootout and we were all absolutely buzzing.

“The crowd was a massive help for us, as they always are, and we can’t wait to play in front of them again.

“In terms of the saves I made during the game and in the shootout, I just did what I’m supposed to do and the 10 others all ran themselves into the ground.

“The other goalkeeper gave me a bit of advice before the penalties, and it’s just about making yourself as big as possible and trying to get in the taker’s head.

“I was there last year when we lost on penalties to Altrincham, so this was massive for us and will hopefully prove to be a big learning experience.”

The FA Youth Cup first round tie against Stockport will take place on Wednesday with a kick-off time of 7pm. Admission prices are £4 for adults and £2 for concessions.