John Murphy full of pride after youth team's cup upset
Blackpool academy coach John Murphy paid tribute to the club's youth team after they sprung a massive cup upset against Southampton.
Murphy, a professional development phase coach at Bloomfield Road, led his charges to the fifth round of the FA Youth Cup after beating the Saints on penalties last night, having drawn 1-1 after extra time.
The young Seasiders now face a trip to Portman Road to face Ipswich Town in the next round for a spot in the quarter finals.
Murphy, who made over 200 appearances for the club, spoke of his pride for the players after they saw off a Category One academy side.
He said: “I think when we’ve had downs in the past they’ve been unlucky downs. I think it’s four times now we’ve lost in extra time, so we were due one.
“Category One sides are normally fitter and they have bigger depth in their squad, but I thought we finished strong and second half we were the better team.
“To be honest I was a bit worried at half time. We went in 1-0 down to the worst set piece goal I’ve ever seen.
“We nearly concede again with five minutes to go and they’ve hit the post from 25 yards.
“I just told them at half time not to waste their opportunity and to leave everything out there. Second half I thought we were the stronger team.
“I didn’t want to tempt fate and tell the coaches that the opposition have gone a bit, but I thought it in my head.
“In extra time it’s one of those where we’ve got six or seven lads who were suffering with cramp. We made a couple of subs and it was a bit cagey.
“We get to penalties and it’s all down to character then. I had lads who would have taken one but couldn’t because they couldn’t walk.
“Craig (Thordarson) was the hero last time and he’s the hero again here. The good thing about it is the analysis, as we’ve seen their number nine’s last two penalties and both times he went down the middle.
“Craig was brave enough to think that because he could have looked stupid had he just stood there.
“So they listen, they learn and they’ve worked their socks off and I couldn’t be any prouder.
“It’s been a phenomenal night and the good thing is all the first-team players were here and they came into the dressing room, gave everyone a hug and drenched them with water. That’s what it’s all about. This is where they’re trying to get to.
“By performing like they did they might get there.”