Cinderford Town manager Paul Michael says his side welcome any challenge and that the Foresters are “more than capable of causing an upset” after advancing into the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, with a 5-3 win over Bideford at the Causeway.
Michael’s men had to come from behind twice, including going 1-0 down inside the first minute to Craig Duff’s opener and being 3-2 down with just 20 minutes left – but ultimately ran out winners in front of 133 at the Causeway.
Goals from Ethan Moore and Nick Rhodes put Cinderford 2-1 up, before Charlie Lawrence and a William Tucker penalty looked set to knock Cinderford out of the Cup.
However, a James Harding double either side of a Marley Thomas strike saw the Foresters edge a thrilling cup tie and getting their name in the hat for the next round. After the game, Michael told Severn Sport that the game was all about the result in the cup.
“Of course with the prize money at stake the result is ultimately the most important thing, but performance is always important to us as if we always aim to be better than we were before then results will take care of themselves.
“The FA Cup is just about winning ultimately, so we are just happy to be in the draw again and see the journey continue one more game” said Michael.
Cinderford make the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup for the third year in a row, having waited six seasons between 2011-17 to make this stage of the competition.
Ahead of the draw which sees sides from the National League North and South enter the competition, Michael believes his side are more than a match for sides from the higher levels.
“The prospect of the National league South & North coming in is exciting as I’m sure everyone would love a crack of one those clubs, but obviously a home draw is what we all want as if we get a team on our level or below we will back ourselves to continue the journey. If it’s someone from above then I don’t think anyone will have an easy time at the Causeway. We are more than capable of causing an upset” warned Michael.
The cup win will allow Cinderford to build some momentum after a mixed bag of results to start their Southern League Division One South campaign. After beating Cirencester on the opening weekend, the Foresters have a 2-1-2 record from their first five games. But Michael told Severn Sport that he is hoping to win as much as possible to benefit the league form.
“I think winning football matches breeds that winning culture and regardless of the competition that’s what we are trying to create at the club. Hopefully we can carry that on back in the league next week when we head to Basingstoke Town” he added.
Cinderford Town will be joined in the hat for the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup by Cirencester Town after their 1-0 victory over Gosport Borough at the Corinium Stadium, whilst Gloucester City will enter the competition in Monday’s draw. Evesham United will be looking to join them when they host Dorchester Town in their tie on Sunday afternoon.