Gill feels ‘really proud’ of City U23s following dramatic comeback at Wolves
- Credit: James Bass
Matt Gill wants his Norwich City Under-23s players to be proud of their dramatic comeback from 3-0 down to draw at Wolves in the Premier League Cup.
The Young Canaries kept their hopes of progressing from the group stages alive despite conceding three goals in the opening 36 minutes at New Bucks Head, the home of AFC Telford United on Monday.
Todd Cantwell – who has recently featured on the bench for City’s first team – fired home from close range from a Tristan Abrahams cross just before the break to give the visitors hope.
Gill’s half-time team talk paid dividends and Cantwell set up Abrahams to fire a fine effort home in the 89th minute and, in the last of four added minutes, Cantwell turned home an equaliser at the back post after a long free-kick was put into the box by keeper Aston Oxborough.
“We were slightly naïve in the first half, especially for the first 25 minutes,” said Gill. “We needed to become a little bit more streetwise.
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“We’ve come off the back of two really good performances footballing-wise against Southampton (a 3-0 home win) and Fulham (a 2-0 away defeat, also in Premier League Two) and the lads need to recognise that games are different. You’re not always going to be having loads of possession and playing nice football on a nice pitch.
“Tonight was a good learning experience for the boys. You have to play with what the game is giving you.
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“Everything I asked of them at half-time, they did. We were first to the ball and got on a lot of second balls, played some really good stuff again and, all-in-all, to come back from 3-0 shows real bravery and courage. I’m really proud of the group and they should be really proud of themselves.”
City are third in Group C of the PL Cup, having lost their opener 3-2 at Bournemouth.
Cantwell now has four goals in 11 games, tied as top scorer with striker Abrahams, who has four in 10.
“They’re a great bunch of lads,” Gill added, speaking to City’s website. “They’re still finding their way in the game. They’re trying to learn what they need to do to get the best out of themselves individually and I’m trying to harness that.
“Tonight was a different type of game and the boys will learn loads from it.”