Second year scholar Harrison Hopper is relishing the opportunity to play in Tuesday night’s FA Youth Cup first round tie against Doncaster Rovers.
The midfielder missed out on playing in last year’s competition through injury, so is looking forward to the match.
“It’s one of the games you look forward to the most when the season starts,” said Hopper.
“The Keepmoat is a good stadium, and it’ll be a great experience to play under the lights with a lot of people watching.
“I found out I was injured one or two days before the game against Accrington last year, which was quite a hard pill to swallow. It was hard watching from the sidelines, especially when the game itself was frustrating after they parked the bus and we couldn’t get past.”
Tuesday night’s opponents are currently top of the North East Youth Alliance League, while Dale are second in their respective division. Hopper believes it will be a competitive fixture between two in form sides.
“Minus Saturday’s result, which saw us put out a young squad, we’ve been on a good run and winning lots of matches. Everyone is playing well and we all understand each other. We had a sticky start to the season but after that we’ve done really well.
“It’ll be a very difficult test for us against a very good side but I’m going to enjoy it."
He’s also keen that the lads don’t put too much pressure on themselves.
“It would be great to get a good run in the competition. We saw Blackpool get the semi-finals last year and it would be brilliant to do something like that.
“We’ve got to treat Tuesday’s game like it’s any other game. We don’t want to put anymore pressure on ourselves – it’s important we enjoy it. If we do that, then hopefully we’ll play well.”
Watch the full interview on iFollow.