Liverpool face Manchester City for this year’s FA Youth Cup title on Thursday evening, in what is their first appearance in the Final since 2009.
They lost out over two legs to Arsenal on that occasion, but their aim to repeat the club’s last FA Youth Cup title in 2007 has been re-ignited this year.
- The FA Youth Cup Final
- 7.45pm, Thursday 25 April 2019
- Academy Stadium, Liverpool FC
- Live on BT Sport 1
And fresh from competing at the prestigious Dallas Cup in the USA last week, head coach Barry Lewtas sees this game as another step in his players’ progression.
“We are absolutely delighted to be here,” he said.
"Reaching the FA Youth Cup Final is part of this squad’s development.
"To be in a final and everything that comes with it: the preparation, the game day, the match itself, and dealing with what goes on after the game; it’s another part of their development and we are really looking forward to it."
Lewtas, who took on U18 duties this season following the departure of Steven Gerrard to Rangers, also knows their opponents well.
The two clubs are competitors in the Premier League U18 ranks, with Liverpool beating City by 1-0 earlier in the season in their only meeting to date this season.
And the former Wigan Athletic coach is looking forward to taking them on again.
"We face a really good Manchester City squad who have a good recent history in this competition,” he added.
"We know we are up against a top team, strong opposition, and at a really nice stadium to play in.
"We are excited to be here, we have prepared properly and we are ready."
You can read Lewtas’s full interview in the official FA Youth Cup Final match programme, which you can order online.