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Page last updated at 16:06 GMT, Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Darlington coach Liddle proud despite FA Youth Cup loss

Craig Liddle
Liddle made more than 300 league appearances as a player

Darlington head of youth development Craig Liddle has revealed his pride in his side's display despite Tuesday's 6-1 FA Youth Cup defeat by Arsenal.

The Quakers bowed out at the third round stage after seeing off York, Mossley, Accrington Stanley and Huddersfield in prior rounds.

"I'm immensely proud of them, really proud tonight," Liddle told BBC Tees.

"That's one of the best youth sides in the country, and just to play against them was an achievement in itself."

Liddle's side conceded on 10 minutes to Chuks Aneke, but a goal from Rob Ramshaw pulled the Quakers level eight minutes later.

But the Gunners responded quickly through Aneke, who finished with a hat-trick, and Benik Afobe before Daniel Boateng completed the rout.

"We rallied and got a goal back, and I joked to the lads saying that we'd got them angry," Liddle added.

"The only disappointment was that we gifted them two goals, for them to go 3-1 up, and from then on it was about how many they were going to score.

"Give credit to the lads, because I said if you work hard and give me everything you've got, then I can't ask for anything more because that is the standard they're hoping to achieve.

"The gulf was there for anyone to see, we're not going to deny that.

"We've got a fantastic bunch of talented players here at Darlington, they're not only talented players, but they work hard too.

"I've got a fantastic bunch of kids who come in everyday, work their socks off, and they're a very tight-knit group."

Liddle was a former Middlesbrough and Darlington player, making more than 300 Football League appearances during a 15-year career.



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