March 7 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Essex Senior Cup quarter-final: AFC Hornchurch v Dagenham & Redbridge.
Hornchurch welcome local rivals and League Two side Dagenham & Redbridge to Bridge Avenue tonight hoping to upset the odds and qualify for the semi-finals of the Essex Senior Cup.
Urchins are holders of the competition, having defeated Grays Athletic in last year’s final held at Daggers’ Victoria Road home.
They go into this fixture following a poor run of form. but manager Jimmy McFarlane is relishing going up against the Football League team.
“Of course they are favourites, they are a League Two side,” admitted Hornchurch’s manager.
“But if I could have picked a game to play after three defeats it would be a cup game, one with no pressure.”
At the same stage last year Hornchurch beat League One side Colchester United 4-3, with the U’s fielding a strong side. That result gives Urchins huge belief.
And although when McFarlane watched Daggers in action in the previous round he was impressed, he is up for the challenge.
He said: “I actually watched them against East Thurrock, they had four or five first teamers playing then and it showed.
“I was really impressed, they were very good. Fitness wise they were excellent and they passed it around really well.
“It is the toughest draw we could have got but we did it last year by beating Colchester with several first team players in their team.
“To win the cups you have to beat the best teams put in front of you so that is what we will be trying to do.”
The match was originally scheduled for last Tuesday but was postponed due to the poor weather, and a 2pm inspection has been called at Bridge Avenue.
McFarlane added: “If the weather is like it was on Monday, sun out and windy then it will be fine but any more rain and we will have to see.
Full back Alex Bentley is out injured as Hornchurch look to defend their crown and cause a cup upset.
Daggers will continue to field several players that are on the fringes of the squad.
The likes of Chris Dickson, Sean Shields, Anthony Edgar and Josh Scott all need game time, and will all get the chance to impress boss Wayne Burnett tonight if the game gets the go ahead.