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Young Clarets Star On Big Stage

Philliskirk praise for cup heroes as Clarets reach last eight

28 January 2020

Tony Philliskirk praised his big-game performers as the Clarets stunned West Bromwich Albion to reach the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup.

The Baggies – who play at a higher Academy level – were favourites to go through to a last-eight clash at Fulham or Manchester City.

But Burnley produced an inspired performance to deservedly win the fifth-round tie at Curzon Ashton 2-0 thanks to late goals from midfielders Dylan Moonan and Corey Brennan.

“I’m really proud. It’s a fantastic achievement against a very well-established and successful Category One team,” said Philliskirk.

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“Everything I asked the boys to do and everything we’ve worked on leading up to the game came to fruition.

“But it’s easy as staff and coaches putting things into practice, the boys have got to go over the white line and implement what we speak about and I thought they did that, every man, to a tee.

“The spirit in there is fantastic and they seem to be a group of players who when the big games come around they perform and they certainly did that tonight.

“I’m so proud of them and I think it’s great for the club and the Academy as well. And now we have the glamour tie of City or Fulham away.”

City, beaten finalists four times in the last five seasons, entertain Fulham a week on Thursday.

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The Clarets will then travel to the winners in a first quarter-final since 2012.

And while they will again start as under-dogs, Philliskirk believes his players will relish the challenge.

The Under-18s head coach added: “We’ve been pretty inconsistent this season and if you had said to me at the start of the season we were going to get to the last eight of the FA Youth Cup, I’d have probably said ‘I’m not sure about that’.

“But as time has gone they’ve just grown together. The spirit is so good amongst them and whatever level of football you play at, if you’ve got that you give yourself a chance and it was shown in abundance tonight.”

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