STOKE CITY’S Under-17s have been crowned Generation Adidas Cup champions courtesy of a dramatic victory over MLS side Real Salt Lake at the FC Dallas Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The young Potters claimed the coveted trophy with a 3-2 penalty shootout triumph in Texas after forward Julien Ngoy had cancelled out Sebastian Saucedo’s first-half free-kick in normal time to take the tie to spot-kicks.
Tommy Dyche was the Potters hero in the shootout as the England Under-16 goalkeeper saved two Real Salt Lake penalties to help his side become the first overseas winners of the tournament in its seven year history.
Academy Director Dave Wright told stokecityfc.com that he was over the moon with the triumph and lavished praise upon the squad who battled against issues both on and off the pitch throughout the tournament.
“As you can imagine we are absolutely delighted with the success of the team out here in Dallas and how they have conducted themselves during the competition,” beamed Wright.
“The boys have been an absolute credit to the Club, and the staff have worked extremely hard so it’s been a fantastic effort from all of those involved.
“It hasn’t been the easiest of weeks in terms of some of the organisational matters which we have had to deal with off the field, so to go on to win the tournament in the circumstances is truly magnificent.
“We couldn’t rotate players as much as we would have liked throughout the competition with only 14 players available to us and we also picked up a few injuries along the way, but the lads have worked extremely hard and it’s without doubt been worthwhile.
“They have represented the Club fantastically well and hopefully we have done Stoke City proud with our achievements.”
Wright added that he was delighted with how the group showcased their talents on the international stage and that it was a great experience for the players to help further their careers with the Club.
“We are really encouraged by what these group of players have been able to achieve out here in America,” he said.
“There’s still a lot of work to do with them and a long way to go, but they have shown this week what they are capable of doing and what potential they have.
“The lads have conducted themselves superbly throughout and I think we have impressed everybody at the tournament.
“The group have really enjoyed the experience and it is something they can learn a lot from going forwards.”