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FA Cup star Sam Habergham still confident of making it in the Football League

Lincoln City celebrate after beating Oldham in the second round of the FA Cup, top set up a tie with Ipswich. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

Lincoln City celebrate after beating Oldham in the second round of the FA Cup, top set up a tie with Ipswich. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

PA Wire

Norwich City academy product Sam Habergham is preparing for the biggest game of his career and loving every moment of his time in the spotlight.

Sam Habergham
 in Norwich City kit ahead of the 2010/11 season. Photo: Jerry DawsSam Habergham in Norwich City kit ahead of the 2010/11 season. Photo: Jerry Daws

The left-back is a key part of the Lincoln City side which have made national headlines on their way to tomorrow’s FA Cup fifth round tie against Burnley.

The National League leaders have already left Oldham, Ipswich and Brighton trailing in their wake and Habergham is relishing today’s lunchtime clash.

“We’ve got to the stage now where a lot of the teams left in are Premier League sides, so you were hoping to get one and we got one away from home at Turf Moor,” the Imps’ defender said.

“It’s going to be a great day for the club and as long as we enjoy it, against a good side in Burnley who I think have got the best home record in all of English football at the moment. So it’s going to be tough, we saw Chelsea went there at the weekend and drew 1-1 so that shows how hard it’s going to be for us.

Lincoln's Nathan Arnold scores in the final minutes of the FA Cup replay against Ipswich at Sincil Bank. Picture: PagepixLincoln's Nathan Arnold scores in the final minutes of the FA Cup replay against Ipswich at Sincil Bank. Picture: Pagepix

“It’s a weekend where the fans and ourselves can just go and try to enjoy ourselves, everyone’s looking forward to it in the build-up so it should be special.”

Habergham was first involved with City’s academy at seven years old and signed professional terms when Bryan Gunn was manager in 2009.

The Yorkshireman, who was brought up in Great Ellingham, near Attleborough, didn’t make a senior appearance but has played in the top tier of non-league since leaving in 2011, initially with Tamworth and then Braintree, before following Danny and Nicky Crowley to Lincoln last summer.

That saw the 24-year-old become a full-time pro again, having coached for Norwich City Community Sports Foundation during four years as a part-time player at Braintree.

“I want to play at the highest level I possibly can,” he continued. “Obviously when I left Norwich I dropped down into non-league and I learned the way and how to play and compete in men’s football.

“I’ve had a good four or five years of doing that now and I feel like I’ve reached a point now where I’m still at a good age and I can still can go and play at a good level. But there’s lots of players like that in the National League and it’s about getting a break and trying to get yourselves promoted like hopefully we can.”

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