Linnets FA Cup tie comes complete with romantic twist

Ethan Coleman keeps his eyes on the ball - Credit: Ian Burt

Midfielder Ethan Coleman is a crucial component of the King's Lynn Town team - Credit: Ian Burt

King’s Lynn Town face Peterborough Sports in the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup – CHRIS LAKEY looks at some of the talking points... and the main characters 

The romance of the FA Cup comes to The Walks this afternoon, courtesy of a local hero. 

Michael Gash says his goodbyes to the football club. Picture: Ian Burt

Michael Gash says his goodbyes to the football club at the end of last season - he returns with Peterborough Sports this weekend - Credit: Ian Burt

Michael Gash 

The 35-year-old returns for the first time since his four-year career as a King’s Lynn Town player ended in the summer - he was a favourite with the fans and this season, when goals have been hard to come by, and they still sing his name. 

Instead, the striker has been playing for Southern Central Premier side Peterborough Sports (PSL). 

For players like Gash, the inevitable warm welcome will be something of a sideshow. Nothing will please Gash more than seeing his team’s name in the hat for Sunday’s first round draw. 

Gash was playing the diplomatic line in an interview with the Linnets’ official YouTube channel this week when he said: “I’m looking forward to it. With the game being the FA Cup as well it makes it that little bit extra special and a there’s a bit of history riding on it for PSL as well. Hopefully I can get a good reception - I had a great four years there, very successful in the time I was there and had a great relationship with the fans as well. Hopefully there might be a nice reception for me but there’s only one thing on my mind and that’s to win for PSL.” 

Kyle Callan-McFadden wins the ball - Credit: Ian Burt

Kyle Callan-McFadden - a warrior in the heart of the King's Lynn Town defence - Credit: Ian Burt

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Kyle Callan-McFadden 

Callan-McFadden will suspend the pleasantries for 90 minutes at least as they look to prevent a mini giant-killing – it could be that his head-to-head with Gash will be the focus of attention for many.  

“Will there be blood?” he was asked. 

“Ninety minutes is a long time isn’t it? If the gaffer picks me you will see then from the sidelines. 

“Cup runs are always a bit slippery – they will obviously try and come here and cause an upset but we just need to focus on ourselves and what we’re good at. 

“It's time to do the talking on the pitch. Gashy was a big player here for years. I only joined here this time last year so I didn’t get long with him. From what the other boys are saying he is a warrior on the pitch. We know how we play – it will be a battle.” 

Ethan Coleman 

Coleman didn’t arrive at The Walks until the financial effects of Covid began to bite in March, so missed the win at FA Cup win at Port Vale and the second round loss at Portsmouth. 

But he’s made the holding midfield berth his own this season following a permanent move in the summer with some outstanding performances 

“I am really looking forward to it personally,” he said. “We want a good cup run. It is difficult playing teams from lower leagues, but we have got to come out on top. 

“They are on a good run in their league and are a team looking to come up in the leagues, but we have to stop that. We have to get out heads right and perform.” 

Jimmy Dean 

Dean is PSL manager and has led them to the top of the Southern League Premier Division Central -  two levels below Lynn and the National League. 

“As far as reaching the first round is concerned, it’s a terrible draw,” Dean told the Peterborough Telegraph. “The gulf between the National League and the division below is huge and we are a further level down so the task is very difficult. 

“It’s not an unassailable task, but I’d give us a 2/10 chance of winning, 3/10 at a push. 

“I’ve watched Lynn and they were very good. They keep the ball really well and move it quickly. Their possession stats are second best in the National League even though they are near the bottom of the table. “They are well managed and well drilled and we are going to be right up against it.” 

Team news 

Lynn’s loan players – Joe Rowley, Luis Fernandez, Malachi Linton and Brett McGavin are all eligible to play. Joe Taylor is cup tied, having played for Wroxham in a previous round. 

Junior Morias and Tyler Denton are recovering from hamstring injuries and will be doubtful. Pierce Bird has also been out with a foot injury.