After the women’s team team won the FA Cup, the League Cup and of course the League, the youth team continued the story by adding the Youth Cup to their winning of the Academy League.
The second leg of the FA Youth Cup final was won 2-1 against a Liverpool team that showed what we had guessed from the first leg: that they teach the nasty side of the game (of the elbow in the jaw variety) early on Merseyside.
The crowd was tiny compared with the first leg at the Ems last friday, and the limit of Liverpool’s ambition was shown when they scored their only goal of the game, to bring the aggregate to 2-5. They celebrated as if they’d won the league.
So, 6-2 to the Arsenal on the anniversary to the day of a goal by M. Thomas. Quite a nice feeling.
As I have mentioned many times, Arsenal Academy won their league by such a margin that the league was over by about January. This team really is quite something. (One fact: they scored 99 this season from about 30 games.)
You’ll hear many people say that 2 or 3 members of a winning youth team on average will go on to play at the top level. That might well be true, but that is “on average”. This team is way above average. Having two or three players come through would be a disappointment. I would expect players such as Wilshere (obviously), Coquelin, Sunu, Emmanuel-Thomas, Murphy and Lansbury all to make it – and I have probably missed someone obvious. Oh yes, Sanchez Watts.
This is a great team – if Arsenal release a DVD of the first leg, get hold of it. And when these players make their way through, let us sing a song for Steve Bould.
Final thought: you can see the youth team and the reserves playing all over the south of the country. It is worth going – there’s no charge.
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