The world’s first football club make their entrance in the world’s oldest cup competition this weekend as Sheffield FC host Shirebrook Town in the FA Cup preliminary round.
Boss Ian Whitehorne says his players need no motivating when they take on the NCEL Division One side. “The FA Cup is a competition every player wants to be part of. There’s nothing like a little bit of cup success even at our level, you only need to get past couple of rounds or so and you can pull out a plum tie against one of the non-league big boys.”
But Whitehorne acknowledged the tie is a potential banana skin: “It’s a no-win situation for us, we are going to be favourites because we are in a higher league and everyone expects us to win. But it doesn’t always work out that way. We’ve had an indifferent start, while Shirebrook have had a good start and will fancy their chances.
“I know Julian Watts from his time at Hallam. He has changed things around And got them playing good football.”
Striker Aaron Moxam who signed a duel registration with Sheffield and Shirebrook will not play. Whitehorne explained: “We had a gentleman’s agreement beforehand with Shirebrook that while he was there he could play in their first FA Cup tie on the understanding that if they won, which they did, he couldn’t play against us.
“Aaron has gone there for a few weeks to get some game time under his belt and score a few goals. He has done well and will come back a better player.”
In the Evo-Stik Premier Stocksbridge Park Steels go to Rushall Olympic looking to build on the foundations that have seen them lose just one of their four fixtures. Manager Darren Schofield has injury doubts concerning Ben Turner and Chris Bettney after both hobbled out the draw with Blyth Spartans on Monday.
Worksop Town take AFC Fylde at Sandy Lane. The Tigers have taken seven points from the opening four games and Shaw said; “Considering who and where we have had to play I would have taken that at the start.”
After picking up four points from the last two games Frickley Athletic will look to make it three without defeat against second in the table Chorley at Westfield Lane with visitors undefeated in four.
Matlock Town face a testing trip to Blyth Spartans who are unbeaten in two at home, while Buxton entertain a Whitby Town side that has yet to taste defeat this season.
FA Cup Preliminary Round: Sheffield FC v Shirebrook Town.
Premier Division: Blyth Spartans v Matlock Town, Buxton v Whitby Town, Frickley Athletic v Chorley, Rushall Olympic v Stocksbridge Park Steels, Worksop Town v AFC Fylde. Tuesday, Sept 3
Premier Division: Frickley Athletic v Blyth Spartans, Stocksbridge Park Steels v Buxton.
Wednesday, Sept 4 Premier Division: Ashton United v Matlock Town, Whitby Town v Worksop Town.