Walsham-le-Willows hoping for FA Vase joy against Haringey Borough

Ipswich captain Callum Bennett tackles Walsham's Jack Brame

Ipswich captain Callum Bennett tackles Walsham's Jack Brame

Walsham-le-Willows will be hoping to make a slice of club history this afternoon as they entertain Haringey Borough in the FA Vase second round.

Walsham-le-Willows will be hoping to make a slice of club history this afternoon as they entertain Haringey Borough in the FA Vase second round.

The Summer Road club have never progressed further than the second round in this national competition and face an in-form Haringey side who have won their last five Essex Senior League matches.

However, Walsham are buoyed by a good result at Ely last weekend, a game that saw Jack Brame net a hat-trick. And they have enough about them to claim the £1,200 incentive for victory today.

“It will be a difficult game but one we would love to get through,” admitted Walsham chairman Mike Powles.


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“Our season so far has been indifferent and after our summer signings we expected to be flying more than we have. After eight or nine games it was not a good start, so we’ve re-grouped and changed our thinking.”

The FA Vase is a competition which the Eastern Counties League has a proud record, although Powles feels the movement of so many ECL clubs up the pyramid has been beneficial to the northern clubs in the competition.

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“I was in Penith recently and saw Shildon play,” he added.

“They were just so much bigger and physically stronger than most of our team, but they are at the same level. They were more streetwise, I think the northern clubs are. And much of that is because so many southern clubs, especially around here, have made the step up and into the FA Trophy.

“Moving up for us is a bit of a no go at the moment. Too much travelling, too many midweek games that would cost us a lot to run. It’s a shame more people don’t come to watch non-league football, it has so many things going for it, not least the cost of getting in!”

So, Walsham will be hoping to pick up a tidy winners’ cheque today with a squad, let by Paul Smith and John Taylor, which is more than capable.

It won’t be easy but Walsham, who were in the Suffolk and Ipswich League when Powles became chairman more than 10 years ago, have come along way and certainly have the players to perform.

With Nathan Clarke now fully fit and in manager Smith, a former FA Vase finalist, they also have the experience in abundance.

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