King’s Lynn Town ace Watson not pressured by FA Cup prize money

Ross Watson in action for the Linnets against Stourbridge. Picture: Matthew Usher

Ross Watson in action for the Linnets against Stourbridge. Picture: Matthew Usher - Credit: Matthew Usher

Defender Ross Watson insists the financial rewards on offer will not pose an FA Cup burden to the players of King's Lynn Town.

The returning Linnet, who has started his second spell at The Walks in excellent form, knows that the £3,000 prize money availablle for the winner of today's FA Cup first qualifying round clash at home to Boston Town will help boost the club's coffers immensely.

And with extra cash to be made by enjoying a fine run in the competition, the former Lynn skipper admits he and his team-mates are well aware of the importance of getting near the first round proper – on and off the pitch.

Watson said: 'Our run in the FA Trophy (to last 16, 2012/13) a few seasons ago saw us come up against some big teams and it was great for all of us as players to be a part of. It's great for the club, the management, and all of us as a group. Probably the main thing is the financial side of going through for the football club. The money you can earn from a good cup run really helps the club.

'But football is football once the game gets underway. You don't think about the money. All you focus on is winning.'

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The Linnets – who play two levels above Boston – are expected to book their place in Monday's second round qualifying draw by triumphing on their own turf this afternoon. But Watson, who like many of his team-mates came up against the Poachers during Lynn's days in the United Counties League (UCL) Premier Division, isn't taking the Lincolnshire outfit lightly.

'Nobody expected them to beat Holbeach, but that's the joy of the FA Cup isn't it?,' said Watson, who will not line up alongside Henry Eze in the back four for the third game running because Gary Setchell's new signing is cup tied.

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'Ever since the competition began there's always been bigger teams losing to smaller teams. Football's all about what happens on the day. If we prepare right, and do things right, then yes we should be alright. But we're not guaranteed a win just because of who we are – the same goes for all teams.'

Defender Ryan Fryatt is likely to return to Setchell's squad after missing a few matches through injury. He seems the likeliest to slot in at the heart of the back four, if Setchell operates with one, in Eze's absence.

The former Kettering Town new-boy will be a big miss but Watson is sure whoever replaces him will be doing their utmost to make themselves undroppable when the man-mountain is available again.

Watson said: 'We've got a good squad. There'll be one or two changes, that happens, but you never know who the gaffer will play. That's the good thing about him. He's always keeping people on their toes.

'As for me, first of all, I'm just happy to be back at the club. The gaffer always says if you work hard you keep the shirt. So it's going well for me so far. But I know I've just got to keep working hard to keep my place in the team.'

Boston last visited The Walks in the FA Cup for a second qualifying round tie in September 1995 when Setchell was one of the scorers in a 5-1 win. Also on the scoresheet was Andrew Stanhope who, it was later discovered, should have been suspended, and Lynn were thrown out of the competition.

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