Cup game could open doors for Town starlets

Shining in the FA Cup could help to earn some of Luton’s up-and-coming youngsters dream moves in the future according to captain Ronnie Henry, writes Mark Wood.

The experienced right-back was no stranger to successful cup runs during his spell at near neighbours Stevenage.

And Henry is looking for the Hatters to write another chapter in his cup heritage when they go to Premier League Norwich City in the fourth round tomorrow.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

He said: “The lads are all up for it, they’re all looking forward to it. There’s a lot of young lads here that are going to go a long way in football, so they’re looking forward to it and they’re confident as well.

“They’re good players and you never know, some of these lads will get there one day.

“In the league we are always favourites nearly every week to win which is sometimes difficult. We’re going in as underdogs which is quite good, we’ve got nothing to lose really.

“We’re going to a Premier League place to win but, as a professional, as a footballer, I’m expecting us to get a positive result.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“There’s no point going there just to enjoy it because it’s our job at the end of the day and it can take some of these players further - you never know what could happen, some players could get moves off of it.”

And having claimed some big name scalps while at Boro, Henry sees no reason why the Hatters can’t do the same at Carrow Road, especially in light of League Two Bradford City’s march to the League Cup final.

He said: “It’s a big ask, but why can’t it be done? Upsets have happened in the FA Cup before.

“Look at Bradford, they are in the Carling Cup final now, an amazing achievement for that club.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“Why can’t it happen? We at Stevenage beat Newcastle against a very good XI.

“It’s going to be a big ask going to a Premier League club and winning, but this is what we want, this is what we play football for to test ourselves against the best.

“A couple of days training to get up for the game now and we’ll be ready for it on Saturday and the lads will give it their best shot.”

Henry’s relishing the chance to lead Luton in front of 4,000 travelling fans at a sold out Carrow Road too.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“It will be a great experience for myself” he said. “I’ve played in a few big FA Cup games over the last few years, but to captain the side out at a Premier League club is going to be fantastic for me, fantastic for the club and a great occasion.

“I get the youthful enjoyment. I’m 29 now but I’m still young at heart! I still get the buzz, it’s a great cup and these occasions don’t come round often and you have to take these with both hands and enjoy it.

“I will give them a few words if anyone wants to talk to me. I would just tell them to enjoy it and be confident because the 90 minutes goes very quick.

“There’s not time to think about it once the game’s gone, you’ve got to go and do it from the whistle.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The recent snow and ice have made training and preparing for games difficult in recent weeks, but Henry is glad to be looking forward to a game that will definitely go ahead as they take a sojourn from league duties.

He added: “It is a difficult time because obviously we’ve had a few games postponed and training’s been hard in the snow, but we’ve managed to do as much as we can and the lads are a fit bunch anyway so we’re in good shape.

“We’ll have a couple of days training now before the game so we will be up for it.

“Our eyes are off the league until next Saturday. We’ll go into this game knowing the game’s going to be on which is a good thing as well.

“Recently we’ve been playing games thinking is it on, is it not on, this one’s definitely going to be on so we’re preparing right and it will be a great occasion.”