Exeter City’s under-18s coach Chad Gribble praised the work-rate of his side as they booked their place in the second round of the FA Youth Cup with a 3-2 victory over Plymouth Argyle.
Lewis Wilson was the headline maker at St James Park as he netted all three goals for City, but Gribble said his finishes were rewards for his and his teammates’ effort in the match.
“I am delighted for the players,” said Chad. “They worked extremely hard tonight and it is always nice when your hard work gets you what you deserve and I thought, certainly our first half performance, meant that we thoroughly deserved the victory.”
Speaking about Lewis, in particular, Chad added: “His movement in the box was excellent and really well-timed.
“It is something that he works hard on. Lewis is good in front of goal and he has had a little spell recently where he has not scored too many goals and has been a little bit frustrated, but that is why I am so pleased for him because he doesn’t give up. He keeps working day in, day out and he has got his chances and he has taken them well.”
Another player who has caught the eye recently in the youth team is 15-year-old Jay Stansfield. Having recently signed scholarship forms for City he started up front for the Grecians and Chad said it shows, that just like the first team, the Academy gives opportunities to younger players when they are ready.
“Jay’s been brilliant for us,” said Chad. “We are a young group and in the same way Matt (Taylor) is giving opportunities to young players in the first team, we are giving opportunity to young players in the youth team.
“We finished the game with five under-16s on the pitch, with Jay (Stansfield) being one of those players. The effort he (Jay Stansfield) puts in usually brings good performances and he was a credit to himself against Plymouth.”