'It depends on who turns up on the night'... Felixstowe boss Watson ahead of big Stowmarket clash
"It could go either way," says Felixstowe & Walton United manager Ian Watson of his side's KBB NEFF Suffolk Premier Cup semi-final versus Stowmarket Town, writes Nick Garnham.
The pair meet in the first of this season’s semi-finals at Millfield, the home of Hadleigh United FC, tomorrow night, kick-off 7.45pm.
The Seasiders were promoted to Bostik League North this season and now play at Step 4 as opposed to opponents Stowmarket, who operate at Step 5 in the Premier Division of the Thurlow Nunn League.
Watson said: “I have been involved in enough semi-finals over the years as a player, although only one as a manager, to know that it is a game that could go either way. It depends on who turns up on the night.
“The league, which they wanted to win at the start of the season, has now gone for Stowmarket, so this is the big one for them.
“They have players who are Step 4 quality players in their side and they had a good win against Woodbridge Town on Saturday.”
Watson has enjoyed playing in this season’s Suffolk Premier Cup competition, where the Seasiders have already beaten three Step 5 sides so far.
They eased past Long Melford 8-1 and Woodbridge Town 5-1, before a late penalty saw off Hadleigh United 3-2, after the visitors had earlier trailed 2-0.
“Having moved up a league the only Suffolk sides we now face are AFC Sudbury, Bury Town and Mildenhall Town, so for us it is nice to play local sides in the Suffolk Premier Cup.
“There is no doubt that this will be our biggest test so far in the competition,” added Watson.
Felixstowe are up to eighth in the Bostik North League following Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Basildon United courtesy of Josh Kerridge’s 90th minute winner.
Watson said: “Basildon set up to frustrate us, but we kept going and scored a late winner. Both Kye Ruel and Liam Hillyard (who have been injured) came off the bench and played their part.
“We have a really good environment in the changing room which everyone has bought into, and when we make a substitution it seems to have an impact on the game.”