OSSETT Town manager Phil Sharpe insists “there’s no bigger incentive” for his side to beat Solihull Moors in tonight’s FA Trophy third qualifying round replay than the chance to play York City in the first round proper.
Town take on Blue Square Bet North Moors at Stade France tonight (kick-off 7.45pm) after the sides drew 2-2 at Damson Park on Saturday thanks to a last-minute Lee Garside penalty for Evo-Stik Division 1 North Town.
The draw for the first round proper took place yesterday and gave the winner of tonight’s match in WF5 a money-spinning tie at Blue Square Conference high-fliers York City.
Solihull may still be favourites for tonight’s replay but Sharpe believes his men can cause another upset against higher-division opposition and book their clash with the Minstermen.
“I shouldn’t have to say much to the lads tonight, they’ve seen the draw for the next round,” he said.
“There’s no bigger incentive to go out and win tonight then playing York City in the next round.
“I’ve been lucky to play in some good matches as a player but this isn’t for me, it’s for the club. The prize money and the share of gate receipts up at York would be brilliant for the club, and it gives some of the lads here the chance to play in a big match.”
Town defeated higher division opposition in Barwell and Stocksbridge Park Steels in previous rounds and will be looking for a hat-trick of upsets against Solihull tonight.
Sharpe believes his side were well worthy of a replay and could have even won the game on Saturday, but the Town boss will be keeping his feet firmly on the ground tonight.
“I thought on another day we could have won that game on Saturday,” he said.
“We had the best of the first half but then they improved in the second half and got their second goal. They had the better fitness, they have players there that have come from the Football League so that’s a given. But we didn’t cave in and got our rewards.”
He continued: “We’ve got to do it all again though tonight.
“I’m sure their manager will have had a lot to say to his players after the match and if they come up here and play to their best they’ll probably win, they’re still the favourites tonight but we do have the momentum from the weekend.”
Town will be given a boost with the return of striker Neil Towler to the squad tonight after he missed the trip to Solihull at the weekend.
Town will be looking for a bumper crowd to offer their support in tonight’s big match. Tickets will be available on the Stade France turnstiles.
See this week’s Wakefield Express Sport for all the latest news from the district’s Evo-Stik Premier League clubs.