14th Dec, 2019

'Gutted' boss hails side after FA Youth Cup epic

Ben Tyler 7th Nov, 2019

RUGBY Town’s youth team manager Liam O’Neill felt his side were deserving of more following an extra-time 1-0 defeat to Grimsby Town in the FA Youth Cup last Friday.

Luis Adlard’s strike in the first period of extra-time was enough to settle a close affair at Blundell Park in which Rugby’s juniors had excelled against Football League opposition.

Prior to the first round clash, Valley had won four previous ties in the qualifying rounds, helping them achieve their best ever performance in the competition.

O’Neill rued a lack of clinical finishing, but was ultimately delighted by the efforts of his side.

“It’s gutting to be honest,” he said.

“We totally dominated the first half and a significant portion of the second too but, despite some sustained pressure, we just didn’t take our chances at critical times.

“It was an even more impressive achievement to be 0-0 at the end of normal time, considering we had lost three influential players to injury during the game and then to concede after a fortuitous ricochet played in their striker was totally undeserved.

“I’m so proud of this group of players, they have matched a League Two club toe to toe and I would challenge anyone who was there on the night who didn’t agree that we were the better side.

“Unfortunately, fortune didn’t favour us in the end.”

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