Marlow: Eastwood players can make history in Vase

Dave Marlow is in confident mood ahead of Eastwood's big FA Vase tie.
Dave Marlow is in confident mood ahead of Eastwood's big FA Vase tie.
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Eastwood CFC will go into their FA Vase third round game at Desborough Town on Saturday aiming for another historic victory against a side from two levels above them.

The Red Badgers are very much the underdogs for the tie against their Northamptonshire hosts, who sit tenth in the United Counties League Premier Division.

But that matters little to joint Eastwood boss Dave Marlow, who says he and his players will head south in a confident mood and eyeing an upset.

He said: “We weren’t given much chance against Leicester Nirvana in the last round but we took around 150 fans with us to that game and pulled off the surprise result.

“We’re in great form and having a fantastic season so far so we’ll again go into this tie with morale high and will be setting up in a positive fashion and aiming to win the game.

“This is a standalone game, the players know that. Our league ambitions of course take priority but in the FA Vase you’ve got the chance to make history and be remembered for years to come.

“Nobody remembers who wins the CML South a few years down the line, but if you get a long way in the Vase and even get to Wembley, people don’t forget it.

“So we go there on Saturday with real confidence and belief. Hopefully lots of fans will travel again and we’ll make a real day of it.”

Marlow and his Eastwood coaching colleagues went to watch Desborough on Tuesday night as they beat Olney Town 2-1 in a Knockout Cup tie, and is well aware of the threats they’ll carry.

He said: “They’ve got some very good players but some weaknesses too. They have a strong back line and two or three very skilful players, including some who have or could play at higher levels, so it’ll be a real test.

“The pitch could be something of a leveller though and I always back us to win games, particularly at the moment, so we’ll have no fear.”

Eastwood won 5-1 at home to AFC Kilburn on Saturday in the league to keep the pressure on leaders Hucknall, and followed that up on Wednesday night with a comfortable 4-0 win against Swanwick Pentrich Road at the PSUSA Arena.

Marlow said: “This continues to be a league that will go right to the wire and the games we’ll have against Hucknall will be massive around Christmas time because the top sides aren’t going to drop many points throughout the campaign.

“We’re going well and the various competitions we’re in give us a chance to give games to fringe players too and keep the squad fresh, which will help us a lot.

“It’s the old cliche but it rings true - we have to take the games as they come because it’s pointless looking too far ahead. The Vase game will be special but then we play Kimberley in the cup and have big league games with Blidworth and Matlock so we have to stay focused for each of them.”