Youth team skipper Jaden Crowhurst believes that leading the side out this evening at Roots Hall in The FA Youth Cup will be a moment to “cherish”.
The second-year scholar will wear the captain’s armband as Barking visit south east Essex in Second Round Qualifying (kick-off 7:00pm), and Crowhurst can’t wait to step onto the pitch.
"I came on at Ipswich [Town, in last season’s competition] and we were lucky to play in such a stadium and against a big side in the First Round,” he explained.
"It was a tough game and the result was not what we wanted, but this season will be a different test with two qualifying rounds to play in. That’s two more opportunities to show our quality.”
The midfielder, who will be making his 40th youth team appearance in tonight’s encounter, will appear on the turf at Roots Hall for the first time in his career, having watched many matches from the stands.
"It’s going to be a special moment in my career," he declared. "As a 17-year-old, taking the boys out onto the pitch is going to be a very special moment. I’ve been here since I was very, very young, and those are the targets you set at the start.
"I’ve been captain for every single age-group I’ve been in, and to top it off with the U18s is unreal. There’s an atmosphere about it; you’re in every day, working hard, and I think it’s going to be a special moment to lead the boys out at Roots Hall.
"It’s going to be a moment for me, as an individual, that I’m going to be able to cherish,” he concluded.
You can read the full interview with Jaden Crowhurst in tonight’s matchday programme, which due to logistical issues will not be available as a printed version for this match, but can be located online here.
The MidexPRO East Stand will be open tonight and tickets cost £5 for adults and £1 for concessions.