Morsley knows Needham will have to improve on previous clashes with Leiston

Mark Morsley, Needham boss

Mark Morsley, Needham boss - Credit: Archant

Needham Market Manager Mark Morsley concedes Leiston will have a psychological advantage over his side going into tomorrow’s semi-final of the Suffolk FA Premier Cup sponsored by Omni Freight Services Ltd.

Although Needham sit third in the Ryman League Premier Division – three places and eight points ahead of Leiston who have four games in hand – it is their head-to-head results this season that is cause for concern ahead of the tie at Woodbridge Town FC, kick-off 7.45pm.

Glenn Driver’s Leiston side won 4-0 at Needham early in the season and then completed a comprehensive double courtesy of handing out a 5-1 thrashing on their home turf at the turn of the year.

Morsley, who was manager at Victory Road prior to his return to Bloomfields, admitted: “We were smashed in both games – in fact, we were lucky to get away with conceding the goals we did because in both games they had chances to score more!

“It was a shame we didn’t do better in either game because they were both important games for us and they were two tough days for the football club and me personally.

“Yes, it probably does give them a psychological edge. If I was in Glenn’s shoes I would be feeling bullish about my team playing against us. I think it will give them an advantage before the game, but it then depends on how the game pans out.

“The longer the game stays tight the more it will suit us. I think we may have the edge on fitness as a number of times this season we have picked up points late on, so we will need to keep it tight in the first half as we know they are a dangerous side with their attacking flair.”

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Morsley has never won the Premier Cup, the final of which this season is scheduled for Colchester United’s Weston Homes Community Stadium on Monday, May 8th.

He said: “A win could kick us on in the league, and the reverse effect is also possibility.

“I have to say the pressure on us reaching the final now that it is not going to be at Portman Road has subsided so far as some of our supporters are concerned, but we will not be taking the semi-final any less seriously.

“Personally I am pleased that the final is going to be at a professional club as opposed to a local non-league ground as it underlines the importance of the competition.”

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