Driver’s Leiston set for ‘biggest game of the season to date’ in FA Cup
- Credit: Archant
Glen Driver’s Leiston team head to Cheshunt tomorow for their ‘biggest game of the season to date’ in the FA Cup First Qualifying Round, writes Craig Cooper.
After six league matches, the Blues sit third in the Evo Stik Souther Premier league table and progressed in midweek against Cambridge City in the Southern League Cup.
Leiston rested players for that match on Tuesday night, with youngsters Charlie Beckwith and Harry Knights getting game time.
Driver said: “Last Saturday’s win against Redditch United put us third in the league table but I have made it clear that our performances over 90 minutes have not been good enough.
“However, that said, we have lost just one match in seven this season and a lot of teams at our level would have taken that.
“It was pleasing against Cambridge City on Tuesday evening because we competed for the 90 minutes and I was able to utilise the squad. We deserved the win overall and I’m pleased to be in the next round of the competition.
“Saturday’s match at Cheshunt is in my opinion the biggest game of the season to date. The FA Cup is not only an opportunity to win prize money, but create history if you can progress through the rounds. We will be at full strength and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”
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Leiston have good recent history in the FA Cup. They have reached at least the Third Qualifying Round in the previous three seasons.
In 2015, they lost 3-1 to Gloucester City, while Westfields defeated Leiston in 2016 in the Fourth Qualifying Round 2-1, while last campaign Oxford City beat Leiston 4-2 with late goals.
In 2008, the Blues became one of just a handful of sides that reached the First Round Proper having started in the Extra Preliminary Round. They beat higher ranked sides at the time in the form of Carshalton Athletic and Lewes and were finally beaten 2-0 by Fleetwood Town (then a National North side) in a replay at Highbury Avenue having drawn 0-0 at Victory Road.
The Reserves host Needham Market needing a victory to move away from the bottom of the table. On Tuesday, Felixstowe & Walton visit to play the Reserves – providing there is no cup replay between Cheshunt and Leiston.