U18s | Serrar: "The boys would love to have the fans watching them at The Valley"

Hamza Serrar

U18 boss Hamza Serrar is hoping to see a big crowd at The Valley on Saturday for his side's Professional Development League 2 play-off semi-final against Barnsley. 

A convincing PDL2-South campaign saw Serrar's young Addicks claim the league title with six games to spare, finishing 14 points clear of runners-up Colchester United, who take on Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in the other national semi-final on Sunday.

“We have lost in two semi-finals before, but we are really looking forward to this one for many reasons," said Serrar. "We want to get to the final and hopefully finish with a double - the two titles. But we also want to see how we can come through the experiences we have had before in losing the two semi-finals and having to go that one step further.

“Barnsley will be direct and they have done really well, especially in the last few weeks leading up to this semi-final. The northern league is normally really competitive in terms of physicality and they are a very physical side. We have played them twice already; we beat them in the Premier League Cup and lost to them in the league, so it's finely poised."

While there is a lot of redevelopment taking place at the club's Sparrows Lane training ground, the U18s have been able to make full use of the first-team's facilities.

"It's really helping us," Serrar explained. "We have got the grass and the pitches and we are doing some really good work. I know there is a lot of work going on around Sparrows Lane, but we are still managing to get our analysis and all of our work done in the gym. So, in terms of preparation we are still doing what we normally do anyway. We are ready."

Serrar highlighted the importance of supporters attending the tie at The Valley to support the young Addicks as they look to conclude their remarkable 2021/22 campaign in style.

"The boys have worked so hard to get the title to secure a place in the semi-finals and they would love to have the fans watching them at the stadium," he said.

“We have got a very strong group with good players that have been playing U23s football in the latter stage of the season. A few of them have also made their debuts in the first-team like DK [Daniel Kanu] and Deji [Elerewe]. Hopefully, we will have a good crowd and they will be entertained.

“It's been a fantastic season," Serrar added. "I've enjoyed every single minute of it, so have the boys and hopefully the fans will have the same enjoyment come the weekend."

Supporters can purchase tickets for Saturday's semi-final by clicking here.

Charlton fans can support the Academy by signing up to the Valley Gold scheme. Valley Gold enables fans to support the club's Academy in unearthing the talents of tomorrow, as well as giving them the chance to win cash prizes.

Click here for more information on how you can become a Valley Gold member.


(Article by Alex Forrest)

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