Preview ahead of this weekend’s fixture as Latics travel to Bradford City in their third group game of the EFL Youth Alliance Cup.
- Academy Preview: Latics Under 18s travel to Bradford City.
- Latics visit Bradford City in their next game of the EFL Youth Alliance Cup.
- Under 18s hoping to build on impressive victory against Tranmere Rovers last time out.
Wigan Athletic U18s will travel East to group leaders Bradford City this Saturday in the hope of making it three wins from three in the EFL Youth Alliance Cup.
Latics come off the back of a 4-1 away victory against Tranmere Rovers, making it ten wins from ten in all competitions, with goals from Kyle Joseph (2), Joe Gelhardt and Charlie Jolley.
The encounter before this was back in October 2014. Latics will be hoping to avoid a repeat of this after a 1-1 draw resulted in penalties, despite them winning 4-3 following Mayowa Balogun’s winning penalty. Welsh youth international goalkeeper, Owen Evans, was also on hand to deny Bradford twice in the shoot-out.
Hosts, Bradford, are currently placed fifth in the North East Division, winning four of their last six games in all competitions.
Academy manager, Gregor Rioch, has confirmed Latics will be without right-back Ollie Broe, who suffered a knock against Tranmere last weekend.
He also confirmed forward James Berry and wide player Victor Maffeo are closer to returning and reflected on last weekend’s victory against Tranmere:
“James Berry has been involved in some increased training this week, he’s progressing nicely and hopefully we should have him back within 2-3 weeks, along with Victor.
“I was pleased with the shape, we wanted to play a diamond formation and I thought the three strikers were fantastic in getting their goals.
Rioch, when anticipating this weekend’s encounter, said Latics have it all to play for against group leaders Bradford City:
“The Youth Alliance Cup is a different challenge and we will be ready for it, but we know we will be up against a very good side, who were outstanding last season when we played them.
“We want to overtake them in the group, but, we know that won’t be easy for the lads."