Pat ready for Anfield test
Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).
Pat Holland believes his under-18 side will find few finer settings to further their experience than Anfield, where they take on Liverpool on the fourth round of the FA Youth Cup tonight.
The trip to Merseyside is reward for overcoming Nottingham Forest by a single goal at the Lane in the 3rd round tie, while Liverpool were 6-0 victors over Wealdstone at Anfield.
"It is a wonderful fixture for them," reasoned Pat. "We went there just before Christmas when they played Wealdstone and it is a great setting for kids to play, there was a nice atmosphere there and I'm sure the lads are looking forward to it.
"Liverpool have a great tradition and it is the next step for the kids after playing at White Hart Lane. It is part of their aspirations as they get older to play in these stadiums and some will. It is the first step on the ladder for a lot of them and you just hope they do themselves proud and enjoy the evening.
"We just hope we don't get any injuries beforehand because it is a big game for them and a big game for us as a club. If we can get through, like we did to the semi-finals the other year, it is a tremendous boost for the Academy and catches the interest of some of the supporters. The management will be interested and looking too, to see if there are boys that might cope with the highest level."
"Liverpool are not faring too well in their section of the Premier Academy League, but Pat set not store can be set by league placings going into a Youth Cup tie and reports that the Anfield youngsters are an entertaining outfit.
"You can't at all. They've got a fairly young side and the night we watched them they had three schoolboys playing, with three or four under-18s on the bench.
"We felt this was actually their best side, unless there were one or two possibly injured. They've gone for the young players, they play some good attacking football and will be a threat.
"There was a lot of local lads in the side with a few kids from Ireland. They play attractive football, with two wide players - typical of what I would call old Liverpool with Callaghan and Thompson, if you can remember that far back.
"They were enjoyable to watch, a little bit like us in that they want to get forward so now and again they are open to the counter attack. It's great to see kids play open football and I'm hoping it is going to be a good game."
Going back a bit, Pat himself has some previous of performing at Anfield during his playing days at West Ham.
"A little bit! I went there as a 20-year-old and was involved in two of the goals. We were 2-1 up at half-time, they equalised - Emlyn Hughes scored - then they got a third with 15 minutes to go.
"I was running back towards the Kop and it was unbelievable, just a sea of red and white scarves. I will always remember looking at that as a 20-year-old kid and it was a great experience.
"It was a great Liverpool side and they were a tough team to play against.
"I've not won there, but have drawn a couple of times and won at home. At West Ham I got the winner on Jimmy Greaves' debut when we beat them 1-0. That is a nice one for me to look back on."