Having recently enjoyed an impressive run of form in the Football League Youth Alliance Cup, the side now turn their attentions to the FA Youth Cup where they host AFC Totton tomorrow night at the Goldsands Stadium.
Run in a similar format to the senior competition, the fixture is one of the biggest occasions of the season for the youth team, as manager Embleton explained.
“I think the FA Youth Cup is something they all look forward to at the start of the season,” he told afcb.co.uk. “They all want to know when it’s going to be, they all want to know who they are going to play against and they all want to be in the team.
“It’s their big chance to play and create the opportunity of playing against a big club and also to progress, to kick on and do well in a big competition.”
Played under the lights on the Goldsands pitch, the players also have the added incentive of being in a first team environment, giving them a taste of what their future could entail if they continue to progress. This is something Embletion believes will be invaluable to their development.
“It brings the opportunity to play on the pitch. It brings the crowd into the stadium and however big or small it may be, they’re playing in front of their family in a first team environment.
“You normally get higher profile people from the club watching – hopefully the first team manager and people like that are going to take an interest in the game so it builds up in the boys mind that it’s one of the bigger games of the season.”
Embleton also joked that some of the players have gone that little bit extra – showing just what it means to them.
“The whole occasion is big for the boys so at the moment they are all talking about having their hair cut for the game, buying a new pair of football boots and doing all the little bits that make them stand out. I'm sure football boot sales must rocket at this time of year!"
The fixture will be played tomorrow night at the Goldsands Stadium. Kick-off is 7.30pm and tickets are £5 for adults and £3 for concessions. Legends will be open until gates open at 7pm.