Chelsea 2 (2) – Norwich City 3 (4) at Stamford Bridge, FA Youth Cup Final second leg.
What a great couple of days to be a Norwich fan! After securing Premier League status with a thumping 4-0 win over West Brom at a rocking Carrow Road on Sunday, the following day it was time to head to London for the second leg of the FA Youth Cup final at Chelsea. Leading 1-0 from the amazing first leg at Norwich in front of more than 21,500 City fans by a last minute penalty by Cameron McGeehan.
About 3,000 Norwich fans were travelling to this one, a remarkable number for a youth game away from home, with 22 coaches leaving from Carrow Road just after lunchtime, and countless other fans making their way by rail and road.
City fans in yellow were absolutely everywhere in the areas around the ground, but once inside in the Shed End and corner, they were making a terrific and continuous noise, with many of the EN ‘clappers’ brought along for some extra sound. It was an awesome show of support.
Chelsea started the game very brightly and strongly, as one would expect from such a strong side with the huge financial investment it has. Midway through the half Jeremie Boga scored for Chelsea to level the tie overall but the Norwich side and fans responded with even more gusto and this paid off after good work and running by Josh Murphy whose cross across the face of the goal was accidentally bundled in by Chelsea defender Nditi in front of the travelling Norwich fans. Wild scenes ensued and prompted some great city play and shortly afterwards Norwich added a second from yet another clinical penalty strike by Cameron McGeehan.
In the second half Norwich scored a third with the Murphy twins linking up for Josh to finish well. Chelsea did score a late second but by then the result was not in too much doubt and cue euphoric party scenes as the amazing Neil Adams’ side lifted the cup and celebrated with the Norwich fans who partied wildly.
Neil Adams has assembled a side of great youngsters with some huge potential. It’s incredible to think that during those barmy days when Glen Roeder managed Norwich and was slowly dismantling the club that one of the casualties was Neil Adams, what a great decision it was to bring him back into the fold.
Words and photos by richard shashamane