Mildenhall manager Christian Appleford looking for a response

MILDENHALL Town manager Christian Appleford is confident his players can put the disappointment of their last-gasp FA Cup exit behind them when they face Diss Town today.

The west Suffolk side fell at the first hurdle in last Saturday’s extra preliminary round to a fortuitous 90th-minute goal at Brantham Athletic.

Brantham knocked Mildenhall out of the FA Cup last season as well as completing a league double, and Appleford admitted: “They seem to have the Indian Sign over us.

“We had the better chances to win the game, but they put us out with a killer goal. We cleared the ball and it hit one of our players and dropped at their player’s feet. It was a freak bit of bad luck.”

It is back to the bread-and-butter of Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division action this afternoon, and Appleford is looking for a positive response from his players.

He said: “If we play like we did last Saturday we will be alright. You can’t be too downhearted to lose in the manner we did to the side that finished third in our league last season as on the day we matched them.

“On our day we are a match for anyone, but we have a lot of young lads in our team and have to be more consistent.

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“We want to get straight back on the pitch and put it right. I will be looking for a response.

“I think my players were honest and worked hard against Brantham, so if they replicate that against Diss we will be fine.”

Appleford and assistant manager Tom Youngs, who made his name at Cambridge United and also played for Northampton Town, Leyton Orient and Bury and then dropped down to non-league and played for Mildenhall before injury forced him to retire last November, will be without striker Steve Holder for a while longer after he underwent a knee operation.

However, Alex Steed is expected to return following an ankle injury and promising 17-year-old Isaac Jagroop should be fit to return after illness ruled him out of last Saturday’s FA Cup tie.

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