Hastings target FA Cup upset

Hastings United celebrate scoring during their FA Trophy win away to Wroxham last weekend. Picture courtesy Joe Knight
Hastings United celebrate scoring during their FA Trophy win away to Wroxham last weekend. Picture courtesy Joe Knight
  • Hastings United host Poole Town in FA Cup this afternoon
  • Third round qualifying tie at The Pilot Field will kick-off at 3pm
  • Winners will be 90 minutes away from place in first round proper
  • Poole play a level above United and are top of their league
  • Walder back from suspension, Ray should be fit, but Attwood unlikely to make it

Hastings United will be out to pull off an FA Cup upset today (Saturday).

The U’s will host Poole Town in third round qualifying aiming for a 13th victory in the world famous competition over the past four seasons. Kick-off at The Pilot Field is 3pm.

United manager Garry Wilson said: “Poole are a good side - we can’t hide away from that fact. They’ve got some quality players in their team and I know quite a few of them. They’ve got big centre-halves who will be a threat at set-pieces and good quality forwards.

“It’s a difficult tie for us, but we’re not under pressure and we can give it our best. We’ve got a good side that can compete. If we perform to our best, we’ve got a chance of winning. We’ve got to be really tight at the back and show plenty of concentration.”

Poole play their football one level further up the non-league pyramid than United and are top of the Southern League Premier Division with 27 points from 13 games.

United are 16th in Ryman Football League Division One South with 15 points from 10 matches, but are unbeaten in six cup ties so far this term, four of which have been in the FA Cup.

If we perform to our best, we’ve got a chance of winning.

Garry Wilson

The U’s also possess plenty of higher level experience and Wilson hopes his players will relish the challenge of facing higher grade opposition.

If United do win today, they would be one more victory away from joining the League One and Two clubs in the first round proper. They would also pocket a further £7,500 from the FA’s prize fund.

Jack Walder has completed a three-match ban and Sean Ray (foot) should be fit, but Zac Attwood may well need to rest his troublesome Achilles for another week. Chris Cumming-Bart is cup-tied.

TODAY’S FOOTBALL FIXTURES

(Kick-off 3pm unless stated)

Emirates FA Cup, 3rd round qualifying: Hastings Utd v Poole Town.

Macron Store Southern Combination League, Division 1: Lingfield v Bexhill Utd; Little Common v Storrington.

Division 2: Clymping v Westfield.

Reserve Section (East): Westfield v Langney Wanderers.

Sussex Intermediate Challenge Cup, 2nd round: Peche Hill Select v Jarvis Brook 2.30; Rustington v Ore Athletic; St Leonards Social v Cowfold 2.30; West Chiltington v Hastings Utd Development Squad 2.30.

Sussex Bluefin Junior Cup, 1st round (2.30): Henfield II v Crowhurst.

Macron East Sussex League, Premier Division: Mountfield Utd v Rock-a-Nore; Robertsbridge Utd v Hollington Utd; Sedlescombe Rangers v Battle Baptists.

Division 1: Eastbourne Rangers v Old Hastonians; Sidley Utd v AFC Hastings; Sovereign Saints v Wadhurst Utd.

Division 2: Catsfield v Peasmarsh Utd; Eastbourne Athletic v Icklesham Casuals; Herstmonceux v Peche Hill Select II; Northiam 75 v Little Common III.

Division 3: Bexhill Utd II v Sedlescombe Rangers II; Burwash v Pebsham Sibex; Mayfield v Hooe Sports; St Leonards Social II v Westfield III; West Hill Utd v Herstmonceux II.

Division 4: Bexhill Rovers v Hailsham Athletico; Conquest Utd v Punnetts Town; Hawkhurst Utd II v Battle Baptists II; Victoria Baptists v The JC Tackleway II.

Division 5: Battle Baptists III v Robertsbridge Utd II; FC Westridge v St Leonards; Icklesham Casuals II v Hampden Park Utd; Parkfield v Sedlescombe Rangers III; Sandhurst v Magham Down.

Eastbourne Coach Finishers Challenge Cup, 1st round (2.30): Wittersham II v Grasshoppers Old Boys.

Hastings & District FA Junior Cup, 1st round (2.30): Bexhill AAC v Ticehurst; The JC Tackleway v Hastings Rangers.

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