Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Wisbech Town boss Steve Appleby was in a relaxed mood last night after learning who the Fenmen’s next FA Vase opponents will be.
The Thurlow Nunn Premier Division title-challengers will visit Midlands Football Alliance Division One Gornal Athletic in the fourth round of the competition on January 19.
Having won 4-2 at Bradford-based Thackley at the weekend to seal their place in the last 32, Appleby admits the draw could have been much tougher, saying: “I’m fairly happy. Without counting our chickens there were worse draws, even if they might fancy their chances at home.
“I suppose it could have been worse. It’s not a million miles away and although you always want a home draw at least it’s not a 600-mile round trip to somewhere like Bodmin.
“You won’t get an easy game at this stage but we are certainly looking forward to it. We definitely proved on Saturday we’re as good as anybody at this level. But we’ve got to prove it every game to have any chance of getting to Wembley. It’s as simple as that.”
Gornal’s 1-0 triumph over UCL Boston Town at the weekend ensured their name was in the hat for yesterday’s draw – the furthest stage of the competition they have ever reached.
Wisbech were knocked out in the fourth round last season to eventual winners Dunston UTS, after a replay, and Appleby is now looking to prolong the Fenmen’s Wembley dream well into 2013.
The Boston-based manager said: “We’re not planning to go just one better, we hope to continue for quite a while yet. It’s important we don’t look too far ahead mind. I’ve spoken to Boston Town, who felt they should have got something from their game on Saturday. I was able to get an idea of what they are all about.”
Gornal, who play in a village in the West Midlands area near Dudley, have already knocked out Coventry Sphinx, Lye Town, Nuneaton Griff and Atherstone in this season’s competition.
Appleby’s men – who like Athletic play at Step Five of the non-league ladder – came into the Vase at a much later stage and have only had to see off St Ives Town and Thackley so far.
Goals from Steven Reid, Chris Bacon, Adam Millson and Dubi Ogbonna saw the Fenmen stroll to victory in West Yorkshire at the weekend after a near faultless display. The winners of tie will pocket £2,000 prize money as well as a place in the last 16.
The Fenmen are back in action tonight when they host Thetford Town in the League Cup.