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Saturday, 31 January 2015, 15:00

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The FA Cup Fourth Round

Pearson support for youngsters

Leicester manager Nigel Pearson has backed his young side to handle the pressure of the occasion against Watford on Friday night.

Last Updated: 26/04/13 at 19:45 Post Comment

Nigel Pearson: Pleased with young players

Nigel Pearson: Pleased with young players

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A draw would be enough for the Foxes to return to the play-off places but victory against the automatic promotion hopefuls would see them climb up to fifth in the table ahead of their top-six rivals playing the following day.

However, defeat to Gianfranco Zola's team would see Leicester's play-off ambitions extinguished on Saturday afternoon if Bolton and Crystal Palace were both to win.

Ahead of the crucial clash at the King Power Stadium, Pearson, whose squad has an average age of just under 23, told reporters: "I think the players are dealing with the situation very well.

"The fact that the players aren't worrying about the situation and are looking forward to playing the games is good. That is exactly what we are looking for, for the players to embrace the challenge rather than be afraid of it.

"That is always going to be an important factor in succeeding or not, and what I do know is that the players will give it everything they have got.

"Yes, it is a relatively young squad, but it is about how good they are. If they are good enough, then they are old enough.

"We have got some experienced senior players who play a key role within the group as well.

"We have recruited a number of younger players, certainly, but the players who we have available, those that are currently in the side, are there on merit and I think they are dealing with the situation well.

"It is about us going out there and playing the games and not getting side-tracked by external pressures."

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