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FA YOUTH CUP | BREWERS AT HOME TO SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY

22 October 2021

BURTON Albion's Professional Development Phase side will begin their FA Youth Cup journey in a fortnight's time on the back of an historic run in the competition last season.

The Brewers have been drawn at home to Sheffield Wednesday, with the game to be played at the Pirelli Stadium on Friday, November 5 with a 7pm kick-off, in the first round of this season's cup competition.
 
Full details of the fixture, including details on how to attend the match, will be available via the club website (www.burtonalbionfc.co.uk) in due course.
 
Last season proved a record-breaking one for the Academy - with the Professional Development Phase side making it to the fifth round for the first time in our Academy's history.
 
Not only did Albion make it to the final 16 for the first time in our history, but the Brewers did so by beating two Category One Academy sides.
 
Albion's journey last season began in convincing fashion, with Sam Rose's side defeating Worcester City 4-1 at the Pirelli - goals from Ben McLean, Jakub Niemczyk, Ben Radcliffe and Yewo Nyirenda sending Albion to the second round where Mansfield Town awaited.
 
And, again under the lights at the Pirelli Stadium, Albion edged out the Stags in a pre-Christmas thriller. The Brewers twice led through James Matthews' early strike and Luke Redfern's header just after time, but were set back by goals from Jack Deakin and substitute Diego Edwards.
 
But once Matty Richardson finished a superb move by slotting home on 72 minutes the Stags had no response and as the rain lashed down at the Pirelli Stadium the defence held firm to book a trip to Stoke City in the next round - a tie that would be delayed following a brief suspension to the competition.
 
And as with the Mansfield game, Albion would take the lead three times in total, this time with the winner coming in extra time, to advance to the fourth round. Charlie Williams and Luke Redfern netted either side of half-time but both times Albion were pegged back by goals from Sam Knowles and Tom Nixon.
 
But Callum Niven's excellent header in the first half of extra time would prove to be the winning goal against the category one side, with the Brewers defending resolutely in the closing stages to see out a fine win and set up a clash with Southampton.
 
This time, Albion would do the job in 90 minutes - McLean's superb header in the 62nd minute enough to send them through to the last 16 at St Mary's Stadium.
 
Though the Brewers were unable to make it to the quarter-finals - coming up against a superb Aston Villa side that would go on to win the 2020/21 FA Youth Cup handily, this historic run will not be forgotten in a hurry.

But now all focus turns to Sheffield Wednesday, and another chance for Albion's youngsters to make more history and push towards the first team, following in the footsteps of many Albion first-teamers who have used the FA Youth Cup as a platform to showcase their talents.


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