Clydebank under-20s’ manager Scott Carson believes his side’s success this season is all down to the club’s Scottish Cup heroics.

The development squad currently top Conference E of the Scottish Lowlands Development Football League (SLDFL) with a near-perfect record of 16 wins and a draw from their 17 games so far.

The club’s senior team returned to the Scottish Cup this season after a 20-year absence when they become an SFA licensed club earlier in the year – and have pulled off shock wins over League Two side Elgin City and League One Clyde, with a fourth-round tie against Annan Athletic at Holm Park to look forward to in January.

The ‘Friday night football’ initiative from the SLDFL has been deemed a success by Carson, with large numbers of loyal Bankies getting down to Holm Park to back the stars of the future the night before the first team’s games – and the coach says he’s delighted to have the backing of the whole club.

Speaking exclusively to the Post, he said: “The support we get not just from the first-team coaches but the supporters and committee members has been great.

“We might only be the 20s to some people, but to them we are a massive part of Clydebank’s structure.

“There haven’t been many games where we haven’t had some sort of first-team representation from, whether it be the gaffer [Gordon Moffat] or the coaching staff.

“The gaffer is right on top of us and watches us on a Tuesday or Thursday as we train right beside them. He’s always picking away to see who is doing well in the squad.

“His first-team coaches are always at the games as well and giving us their input, which is vital for us.

“The Scottish Cup run has been massive for the club. Everybody is buzzing and that filters its way down into us at the 20s, and the supporters, and everyone else.

“The academy is kicking off as well. We’ve got more teams on board with that – and we’ve got a girls’ team now.

“Clydebank as a football club is the place to be just now.”

The young Bankies have been in devastating form this season, having scored 88 goals and at the other end conceded just 14 – the best goals-for and goals-against records in the league.

Carson says the squad’s success so far has been a team effort – and hopes his side can get the job done and clinch the title in the new year.

He explained: “We’re blessed with a really talented squad, not just an 11.

“We’ve played all our hard games away from home. We’re more or less halfway through, and all the top teams have to come to Holm Park, so we’ve got to fancy our chances.

“The league is a very good standard – not just at Clydebank but from the other clubs as well. That goes from top to bottom – there’s some really good players at the bottom end of the league as well.

“We’ve got a very difficult cup game when we come back in, which is away to Rob Roy, who gave us a bit of doing in pre-season. Before Covid hit, they were chasing us close in the under-19 league at the time.

“They went away from Holm Park with a victory against us that day, and I think they were pretty pleased, so it would be nice to get one over on them.”