Norwich City Academy’s Head of Football Development Steve Weaver was more than happy with what he saw from the Under-18s 5-3 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday afternoon.
Despite going a goal down inside the first minute, the Canaries went on to win the game in a big way after an excellent performance.
Speaking in his post-match interview, Weaver was full of praise for the young Canaries, in particular the Under-16s, who joined the U18s for their fixture against the Eagles.
“We’re really pleased. We purposefully put some games in on Tuesday night so that they’re playing Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Tuesday just to get them used to it. I thought there were spells in this game where we were really tired and it’s about them understanding that and the decision-making behind it.
“I’m really pleased with the Under-16s as well, it was Osman’s [Foyo] first start for us, Ken [Aboh] has been in and around it and did great, but that was his second start for us since West Ham, Alex [Matos] came on. We’re starting to introduce them to the game, we’re a young side and I’ve got to say it’s always good to come to a team who’s doing well and showcase your talents.
“I thought we did that well today. It’s always about the lads, we’ve got some good players, we just wanted to show it and I thought we did today, especially after conceding after 40 seconds.
“We thought that might be the making of us because they might’ve thought it was easier than it was going to be, and I thought for the first 30 minutes we were excellent and played some great football. During that period, we could’ve probably been a few more ahead.”
After conceding so early, having a penalty go against them, and conceding a minute before half time, the City side dug in to turn the tides of the game in their favour repeatedly, with Weaver pleased to see the philosophy reaching the young development squad.
“We’ve got that never say die attitude throughout the club, I like to think they’re brought up the right way. We don’t like excuses, people moaning at the referees, stuff like that. We get on with it.
“It’s funny because we told Sol [Alidor-Hamilton] to just play it and he’s put one in behind then Ken did what Ken does just before half time. They can take adversity, even if we’re losing by five, we’d still be going, we don’t give up because it’s not in our mentality as a club and we wouldn’t accept that as part of our culture.
“When we lose, we lose, but it’s about development and we lose in the right way. I think that’s really important to us as a club. I don’t like using excuses, they’re a good set of honest lads and we don’t allow them to be anything but honest.”