Clive Allen has been an interested onlooker at our FA Youth Cup encounters so far and sees no reason why further progress cannot be made when the boys take on Watford at the quarter final stage on Thursday evening.
Clive's interest goes a little further than simply offering his support as a number of the boys who have featured in this season's Cup run could well enter his selection plans for reserve games next season. Pat Holland's side have done their chances of doing so no harm at all so far with impressive victories over Nottingham Forest, Liverpool and Everton.
It is now off to Vicarage Road for the 7pm kick off and Clive feels the spirit shown so far in the competition will serve them well on the night.
"In the league games, similar to the reserves, the team changes from week to week to give everyone an opportunity," considered the Development Coach. "In the Youth Cup you go in with what is considered the strongest side at that moment in time.
"To go away to Liverpool and win, to win at home to Everton - they have coped very well with really difficult games. They would certainly have been the biggest games of their careers to date.
"The Watford one is a massive one, they will know what they are coming up against because they meet them in Academy football. It is a game, with the ambition these boys have got, that we can get a result from.
"It is a big stage for them to produce and, in this sort of environment, you can see from an early stage the ones capable of doing it. Players thrive on this sort of opportunity and I have seen this in a number of them.
"There has been some fabulous individual performances but, you have seen collectively, they have had to dig deep and they'll have to do it again.
"With the spirit we have seen so far, I do hope they can progress."