Determination to stay unbeaten key in Youth Cup clash
Under-18s manager Paul Driver believes his unbeaten side have the right mentality to continue their fine run of form in their FA Youth Cup second round tie at Leyton Orient tonight.
The young Hatters are unbeaten in 17 games in all competitions this season – 15 of which they’ve won, including a 3-1 triumph over Colchester United in the first round of the competition two weeks ago.
Driver’s side have already met second round opponents Orient twice this term, recording a 3-0 victory in the League meeting in September and then winning a penalty shootout in the League Cup in October.
And while Driver admits their previous league form counts for nothing in the Cup, the youth boss says it is the determination in the squad that can help the Town progress to a third round tie away at Rochdale or Notts County.
“We’ve got the mind-set that we’re used to winning and that we know how to win,” Driver told lutontown.co.uk. “We showed against a higher-ranked academy side in Colchester that the determination was there.
“The confidence of the team is a massive positive. There’s a real determination and character about the boys. The mentality isn’t ‘this run is going to end soon’, it’s ‘we’re not going lose’ and a desire not to be beaten.
“Of course we have to guard against complacency but this group have that little bit extra between their teeth. They want to keep winning, there’s a resolve among the boys and it’s great that their confidence isn’t an over-confidence. They won’t be strutting out there thinking how good they are because they haven’t lost yet this season.”
Driver has no injury concerns for the tie with only striker Geo Craig unavailable, and otherwise he has a fully-fit squad to choose from.
On opponents Orient he added: “We’ve played them twice so both teams will know plenty about each other.
“They are a good side, they beat Southend two weeks ago but the Youth Cup is a different animal. The nature of the competition is vastly different from our usual league matches – but we’ll be using what we know about them, plus the confidence from the Colchester result to our advantage.”
Tonight’s tie is taking place at Orient’s Brisbane Road stadium and kicks-off at 7pm. Admission on the night is £5 adults and £3 concessions.
We’ll have a report and reaction on lutontown.co.uk later this evening.
GOOD LUCK BOYS!