Young Canaries knocked out of FA Youth Cup by Stoke

Oscar Thorn Norwich City U18s

Oscar Thorn celebrates putting the Norwich City U18s 2-0 up against Stoke in the FA Youth Cup - Credit: Norwich City FC

Norwich City Under-18s fell at the first hurdle in the FA Youth Cup despite an excellent start to their third-round tie against Stoke City U18s at Carrow Road. 

Early goals from Ken Aboh and Oscar Thorn went to waste as the visitors fought back to lead 3-2 at half-time and made sure of the win after the break. 

It’s the first time Norwich have gone out of the Youth Cup in the third round since 2014-15, with the 2013 winners exiting in the fourth round in each of the last three campaigns. 

First-team boss Dean Smith and his assistant Craig Shakespeare were among the interested spectators, as well as sporting director Stuart Webber and majority shareholders Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones. 

The hosts made a great start as Joe Duffy played a defence-splitting pass that striker Aboh made the most of, holding off pressure and finishing low under the advancing keeper in the eighth minute. 

Jayden St Paul pushed a free-kick onto his left post three minutes later but City doubled their lead in the 16th minute when right-back Ola Okeowo played Thorn into the right channel and the forward smashed the bouncing ball past the surprised Stoke keeper from just inside the box. 

The visitors halved the deficit within five minutes when their winger Shilo Waldo cut in from the left and fired a low 20-yard shot which St Paul couldn’t prevent from finding the bottom-right corner. 

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They levelled five minutes before the break with a fine low shot from the right from winger Sam Knowles, finding the bottom-left corner. 

Within two minutes the young Potters had the lead against shellshocked Norwich as midfielder Jack Griffiths curled a shot from the edge of the box around the diving St Paul and into the bottom-right corner. 

Alex Matos fired a shot over as City chased an equaliser in the second half but couldn't mount a sustained push as Stoke held firm.

Norwich U18s (4-3-1-2): St Paul; Okeowo, Hills (C), Shipley, Foyo; Brooke (Coker 60), Welch, Duffy (Eze 73); Matos; Aboh, Thorn (Roberts 85). Unused subs: Trueman (GK), Jambong, Reindorf 

- You can watch the game back in full in the video above