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Stoke City (H) Fri 26 Dec 2014, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Young Blues Braced For Goodison Semi

by Daniel Alston @efc_danalston

Kevin Sheedy says Everton Under-18s will embrace the ocassion of their semi-final at Goodison Park on Sunday.

The young Blues contest one half of the end of season play-offs against Tottenham Hotspur in a 5.30pm kick-off.

And having drawn 2-2 at the Londonders' training ground just two weeks ago, Sheedy is confident his side can progress.

He told evertonfc.com: "Tottenham are probably the best team we have played this season. They only had one schoolboy, the rest were second years, so they were as strong as they could be.

"We started with five schoolboys so it was a good test for us and we can be pretty pleased with our overall performance.

"A draw was a fair result. Both teams have periods where they dominated. We had to defend at times, as did they.

"They were given a dubious penalty late on in the game so we were disappointed not to have held on for the victory but we know what they are about now.

"It gave us a good insight ahead of the semi-finals. I had only watched them on DVDs before so I knew what they were capable of. We knew what their strengths and weaknesses were but to see it live is much better and the players themselves have had to work things out as they go on the pitch.

"Of course they saw us first-hand as well but we still have a few tricks up our sleeve. Some of our players did well in the league game, some need to do a little bit better, and that probably might be the difference."

The young Blues reached the semi-final stage last season, but fell to defeat at eventual runners-up Reading.

With his young side another year older, Sheedy has tasked them with avenging that loss with victory at Goodison.

"The goal is to progress to the final and ultimately win it," he added.

"We got to this stage last season so the challenge was to go further this time round. We know it is going to be a really tough game against lots of good players, but we have a few of our own and we have to go there with confidence and know that is a game we can win.

"It’s a semi-final so it’s a one off. It’s who performs well on the day, who has the best players on the day, who plays to their full capabilities, who can win the match for you and who can defend for you.

"It’s a really good game because I think we are the two best teams in it. It’s a good test and of course it is still all about development. You have to be able to pit your wits against the best players and overcome them so we are really looking forward to that game."

Supporters can pay on the turnstiles for Sunday's game (5.30pm kick-off), with admission priced at £3 for adults and £1 for concessions.

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