Youths Look Forward To Cup Clash

IT'S FA Youth Cup Third Round time again, with Hammers taking on Luton Town at Upton Park on Wednesday night, kick-off 7.00pm.

Here, four members of Tony Carr's team give us their thoughts on the coming cup clash and reveal their pride at representing the Hammers in this prestigious competition.

David Cowley - Midfielder

"All of the boys are looking forward to it and everyone is positive about the game. After the Gillingham game at this stage of the Cup last year, which went into extra-time, we know that you can not take any team for granted in this competition. Teams outside the Premiership are still very strong teams at Youth level and they will be really looking forward to coming and playing at Upton Park. Luton will certainly be up for it and that means we have to approach the game right and make sure we start well.
"Playing at Upton Park is a great experience and it will be especially good for the first year boys. The second years will certainly encourage them and hopefully it will be a big occasion with a good crowd there as well. I've been at West Ham United for quite a few years now and we used to play at Upton Park at the end of each season. Plus I've also played there for the Reserves as well as last year's FA Youth Cup quarter-final against Southampton, which is one of the biggest games I've played in. All that should help me feel a bit more relaxed going into this game."

Ryan Andrews - Defender

"It is going to be a similar sort of challenge to Gillingham last year in that we are in different leagues so we don't get to play them regularly. I'm sure that it's going to be a very hard game. We needed extra-time against Gillingham last year, and hopefully we can put the experience of that match to use this time around.
"Everyone is really looking forward to the game. We didn't have a game on Saturday, so we've used the time to prepare for Wednesday night. It should be a great occasion, but I don't see it being easy for us at all and let's also remember that it's going to be a very big night for the Luton Town boys coming to Upton Park.
"They are going to be really up for the game, but so we will and we'll also be very well prepared by Tony Carr and his staff."

Liam White - Defender

"Luton are going to be a tough test for us and we'll have to be at our best. I played against them at Under-15 and Under-16 level, so assuming some of those boys joined the staff at Luton then I might well have played against some of the players before. We can't take anything for granted. They were a tough side then and I'm sure the same will apply on Wednesday night.
"You can be sure that they will work very hard and they will not make it easy for us. Luton will be a very strong test for us."

Hogan Ephraim - Forward

"Last season's Youth Cup games against Gillingham and also Leyton Orient taught us a lot about playing teams outside of the Academy system. It's important to remember that it will still be 11 against 11 on the night and this is going to be no easy game for us. It will be no walkover that's for sure and if any member of the team thinks that on the night then we could come unstuck.
"Actually the guy who brought me to West Ham, Mark Ridgeway, now works at Luton and I know one of their players, Richard Hellar. He was on trial there, I'm not sure if he signed, but he has a strong physical game behind him.
"We will certainly give Luton the respect that they deserve and simply concentrate on playing to the best of our ability. If we do that then hopefully we can win the game."