U23s enter last-16

Neil Ross states he’s focused “more on our performance” ahead of his U23s entering the knock-out stage of the West Riding FA Senior Cup against i2i White on Thursday.

Manager Ross admitted he thought too much about his opponents’ playing style in the final day defeat to AFC Emley, dropping to second in Group B, but has reverted back to focusing on his side’s strengths ahead of the last-16 fixture.

“We have focused [on] our shape both in and out of possession. The lads are always positive and know what it’s going to take to progress to the next round.

Ross won’t change his approach based on the knockout style of the competition ahead, either.

“We treat every game the same and go out to win every game.

 “I’m sure during the game things will change and managing the situation during the game depending on how it’s going. My players are mature enough to manage the game on the field.

Recent form

Four* consecutive victories were followed by two defeats to finish Group B.

*Walkover victories awarded to the U23s by i2i Sky Blue and Hemsworth Miners take the figure to six.

Opponent – i2i International Soccer Academy White

I2i White also finished second in their group [C] with five victories and one defeat.

This is the third different i2i side the U23s have played in the tournament [W-3, L-1].

Man in form – Reggie Waud

Waud scored his sixth goal in three matches with his consolation goal against Emley AFC in the final group stage.

“Reggie is always going to score goals, we all know his strengths in aerial battles and holding the ball up,” explained Ross.

“Every game he plays he’s getting fitter and stronger. We need now to get other parts out his game.”