Ben Petty

Petty Expecting A Tough Battle In EFL Trophy

Ben Petty is confident Leicester City’s Development Squad can continue producing positive performances and results ahead of their return to Papa John’s Trophy action in midweek.
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- Leicester City’s Development Squad travel to face Accrington Stanley on Tuesday (7:45pm kick-off)
- The Papa John’s Trophy fixture at Wham Stadium is the Foxes’ second in Group G
- Ben Petty is excited by the challenge of testing themselves against senior opposition
- City’s coach was pleased with how the team secured a PL2 victory over Leeds United Under-23s 

The Foxes youngsters meet Accrington Stanley of Sky Bet League 1 in Tuesday evening’s group stage fixture at Wham Stadium (7:45pm kick-off), hoping to pick up their first points in this season's competition.

John Coleman’s Stanley sit second in Group G after matchday one, having drawn with Barrow and picked up a bonus point for winning the resulting penalty shootout, while City were beaten 4-1 by fellow third-tier outfit Fleetwood Town.

However, Petty believes there has been plenty of improvement and character development within the young side since that defeat a little over a month ago.

He told LCFC TV: “We’ve got a really, really tough game on Tuesday night in the EFL Trophy away at Accrington and it’s going to be completely different to King Power Stadium. We are going to have to roll our sleeves up there and get ready for a real battle.

“There’s a little bit of learning going on. You don’t expect massive strides with young players, but they’ve really dug in. There’s a lot of team spirit building. It’s a new group, it’s a young group and they are good to work with.”

Although expecting a stern test against senior opposition away from home, Leicester will arrive in the North West with the momentum of a 1-0 Premier League 2 Division 1 victory over Leeds United Under-23s behind them.

Reflecting on Friday night’s victory on Filbert Way, Petty was particularly impressed with the defensive display, leading to a first shutout of the season as well as the three points.

We need to be more clinical but we’re working hard at it and I’m sure it will come.

Ben Petty LCFC TV

“It was a very open game,” the City coach said. “I thought it was too open in the first half for my liking but I thought in the second half we defended much better, we kept Leeds’ chances to a minimum and Brad [Young] was superb in goal. He deserved the clean sheet.

“We rode our luck a little bit at times. Over the course of the season, these things even out. Last week, we were very unlucky not to get a point at Brighton and then tonight we’ve held our luck a little bit and you need that sometimes.

"I thought the back four were really good, especially in the second half. Leeds threw everything at us but we stood strong."

Defensive stability is something City’s youngsters will require at Accrington on Tuesday evening, while learning from the mistakes made against Brighton allows them to build further.

Tawanda Maswanhise showed his quality in front of goal once more against Leeds, scoring the only goal of the game, while Petty felt the experience of first team midfielder Papy Mendy allowed the team to adapt to different scenarios within the game.

“It’s fantastic,” the 44-year-old added. “Those are the sort of goals we want him to score. He does those brilliant solo efforts, but he needs to get himself in the box and around that second six-yard box and it was a good finish.

“We had some gilt-edged chances to put the game to bed. Kasey [McAteer’s] chance, Terell [Pennant] came on and had a great chance. We need to be more clinical but we’re working hard at it and I’m sure it will come.

“We did start a little bit shaky and naïve is probably a good word to use. Papy Mendy was fantastic for the group and really showed his experience and the lads will be a lot better for it for sure.”

All times BST.

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