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Generals braced for FA Cup showdown
CHESHAM United want to right the wrongs of the past few seasons by giving their fans a long and rewarding run in The FA Cup.
Andy Leese’s team have been superbly consistent through the years in the league, but their cup fortunes have wavered and now the manager wants to put that right.
He said: “We need to give ourselves and the club a reward for the last few seasons.
“We’ve had a pretty horrific run in the cup in recent seasons.”
Tomorrow they host Northwood in the first qualifying round of The FA Cup, and they are also in FA Trophy action at Bishops Cleeve later this month.
Leese said: “There is about £10k on offer in prize money this month and we all need the finances, but equally we want to progress for our own pride.
“In the last two seasons we’ve lost to teams lower down the leagues than ourselves and we’d be a big scalp for Northwood.
“We need to take it seriously or we’ll come unstuck.”
But while Northwood are the immediate danger, Leese has his sights beyond them.
He said: “The FA Cup is a great competition and it still gives you a lift every time you’re in it.
“You don’t get many chances in your career to play in it, and I think the first round proper has got to be the Holy Grail.
“It would be a great boost for us if we got there, and then you never know who you’re going to get.”
Chesham can allow themselves to dream of cup adventures after doing their jobs in the league so far.
A 2-1 setback at Bideford last Saturday was a surprise, but they bounced back on Tuesday night to beat Bashley 2-0 and are now joint top of the Southern League Premier Division.
Leese said: “Whatever happens in the next four to six weeks, we should still find ourselves in a healthy position in the league.
“This is a funny old spell. In my first few seasons we had slow starts in the league and did well in the cups.
“When we came back to the league we found ourselves a long way off and they become must-win games then.
“But I’ll take where we are now.”
Danny Talbot scored from the spot at Bideford before Chesham lost their grip on the match when Robert Bartley was dismissed in the 70th minute, with Talbot and Michael Chennells netting in Tuesday’s home victory.