Horlock: The bookies are rarely wrong

KEVIN Horlock today had an FA Vase warning for his Needham Market team mates: “The bookies are rarely wrong.”Ridgeons League Needham are at home to Spartan South Midlands Premier Division Chalfont St Peter (kick-off 3pm) in the quarter-final tomorrow - just two wins away from the final at Wembley Stadium.

Elvin King

KEVIN Horlock today had an FA Vase warning for his Needham Market team mates: “The bookies are rarely wrong.”

Ridgeons League Needham are at home to Spartan South Midlands Premier Division Chalfont St Peter (kick-off 3pm) in the quarter-final tomorrow - just two wins away from the final at Wembley Stadium.

Two rounds ago Needham beat holders AFC Fylde, but former Ipswich Town professional and Needham assistant manager Horlock insisted today: “This game will be tougher.

“Chalfont are 2-1 favourites to lift the trophy at Wembley, and the bookies are rarely wrong. This will be our hardest match in the Vase this season and we will have to be at our best to progress.”

Last season's beaten finalists Lowestoft Town are 7-2 second favourites with SkyBet while Needham are equal fourth favourites along with Glossop at 7-1.

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And both Needham and Chalfont are 11-8 to win tomorrow - with a draw 13-5.

Needham beat Histon Reserves in the Premier Division on Tuesday and trained last night at Bloomfields, and Horlock says that there will be no excuses if they fail to reach the semi-final for the second successive season.

“Manager Danny Laws is a firm believer that you only get out of life what you put in,” added Horlock.

“And we will be well prepared. Our pitch was a bog for the last round against Dereham and it should be better tomorrow after a rest and a dry spell. We like to think we are a footballing side, but Danny ensures that if we have to roll up our sleeves we are capable of that as well. If we need to mix it we can.”

Skipper Mark Bailey misses out tomorrow because of a suspension, while key midfielder Craig Parker faces a fight to be fit after taking a blow to his foot against Dereham.

“Mark will be a big loss at the back as he has been one of our most consistent performers,” said Horlock. “But this is the time of the season when you find out the quality of your squad. And we have players itching to be involved.

“Craig makes things happen for us, but Pip Boyland has come in and been man of the match in the last two matches.”

This is the furthest Chalfont have even been in the Vase and the side from a leafy part of Buckinghamshire are managed by Danny Edwards.

In 2005/06 they beat Felixstowe and Walton United 2-1 after a 3-3 draw at Dellwood Avenue, and they are currently third in the Spartan League, 13 points behind leaders Harefield United but with five games in hand.

They have lost five league games and beaten Totton and Eling, Clanfield, Selsey, Dunston Federation and Christchurch to get this far with their 6-5 success at Dunston their only close game.

Lowestoft are also at home with outsiders Bideford the visitors to Crown Meadow with both Suffolk clubs expecting attendances in the region of four figures.

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