Walking wounded and FA Cup hangover worries Braintree boss Alan Devonshire

BRAINTREE Town boss Alan Devonshire admits they could suffer from an FA Cup hangover and is fretting over the walking wounded ahead of their Blue Square Bet Premier clash against Grimsby today.

The Iron were defeated but not disgraced on Tuesday night, losing 3-0 to League One table-toppers Tranmere in front of 1,503 fans at Cressing Road in the FA Cup First Round.

And with that particular adventure reaching its conclusion, Devonshire is refocusing his sights on the league – but will have a trio of absentees at Blundell Park following Tuesday’s travails.

Sean Marks, who bled heavily from the head after sustaining a nasty injury, is out for a week, while James Mulley and Brad Quinton are also both sidelined for today’s Mariners meeting.

“There could be a bit of a cup hangover,” conceded Devonshire, whose side are just two places above the relegation zone.

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“We are a bit short of players and we will have to see how our walking wounded are doing.

“Marks is out and he will obviously be a big loss upfront. Mulley and Quinton are out as well.

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“But the squad trained Thursday night and there was good movement and passing. There was a spark there from Tuesday.

“Obviously I want a repeat of the effort and performance from the Tranmere game but Grimsby are flying at the moment.

“They won 5-1 last week and will be fresher than us because they didn’t play during the week. That will definitely be an advantage for them.

“They’re second in the league and will be expecting to beat us. It will be a very tough game.

“But the cup run has come to an end now and I’ll make sure the players are refocused on the league.

“That is always the main priority for the club and I’m sure the players realise the importance of that.”

Meanwhile, Devonshire, who memorably tasted FA Cup glory with West Ham in 1980, believes Braintree’s profile has received a boost following their televised Tranmere clash on Tuesday.

“The FA Cup was great for the club. It was a boost both on and off the field,” Devonshire added.

“I think it was watched in 16 countries and it’s always great to raise the profile of the club like that.

“More people will know who Braintree are and what we’re about now. The players did the club proud.”

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