City require a point from final group matchPAUL Wilkinson is hopeful Norwich City’s Under-21s can build on their excellent recent form when they play FC Porto in the Premier League International Cup this Wednesday (2.30pm).
The young Canaries need a point from this final Group A match to secure a last eight meeting with Athletic Bilbao in the inaugural competition.
They are unbeaten at home this season, and heading into the tie at Colney Training Centre, they haven’t lost in four matches following their 2-1 win over Manchester City a fortnight ago.
“We just want to keep the momentum going as much as anything. The boys have been terrific over the last few games,” Wilkinson told canaries.co.uk.
“The home form has been a good strength for us. Hopefully we can maintain that through to the end of the season.
“We’re very focused on Wednesday. It’s an important afternoon for us, and it would be nice if we could achieve the result and earn another game in a few weeks’ time. We know we’re going to have to be at our best to get it, though.”
Compared to their regular opposition in the Under-21s Premier League, City’s coach is expecting a different challenge from a Porto side who compete at a professional level in Portugal.
They faced a similar proposition when they played Borussia Monchengladbach in the competition in January, but a Carlton Morris second half winner earned the Canaries three points that evening.
Wilkinson is going to be able to pick from a competitive squad once again come Wednesday afternoon, and he is confident that progression is attainable.
“I would think that we will probably have two or three senior lads with us. We’ve been given that indication, but obviously that can change with the first-team game on Wednesday night,” he said.
“It’s a strong group now. We’ve got an extra edge that we were lacking for a little while, but Porto will be well organised and they’ll have good players.
“We’ve had them watched a couple of times so we do know quite a bit about them. We expect it to be a tough afternoon for us, but if we show our application then we’ll have every chance.
“We said at the start of the International Cup that it was adventure going in, but whenever you go into anything you’re looking to go as far as you can.”
To learn more about the Premier League International Cup, click HERE.
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