FA Cup: Dagenham & Redbridge defender Sam Ling hopes to get one over dad and Leyton Orient director of football Martin in derby
PUBLISHED: 12:00 12 October 2017
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Family affair for Lings in FA Cup as son Sam hopes to help Daggers progress past dad Martin and his O’s
It could be quiet in the Ling household this week as Dagenham & Redbridge full back Sam looks to get the better of his dad Martin, the director of football at Leyton Orient, in the FA Cup on Saturday.
The draw for the fourth qualifying round of the oldest football competition in the world threw up a mouthwatering tie, with Daggers set to host National League rivals O’s at Victoria Road this weekend.
As well as progress to the first round proper, bragging rights will also be up for grabs as the local rivals prepare to meet for the first time this term, with two league meetings to come over the Christmas period.
For Sam, though, things are a little more personal — in the nicest sense — as he gears up to face a side his father help put together in the summer.
And the Daggers youngster, who still lives at home with Martin, says both have been trying to get information about the opposition out of the other, though not to much avail.
“It’s been a bit weird at home with us both trying to get the team out of each other — I think it might be best if I stay in a hotel for the week and don’t talk to him!” joked the younger Ling.
“It will be good as I now have three chances to get at least one over him this season, so we’ll see come Saturday.”
The weekend’s game will also see Sam come up against his former club, having been a part of the Orient academy before joining Daggers in 2016.
The defender was at one point captain of the O’s youth team and was in the academy alongside players like Myles Judd, who has since progressed to the Orient first team.
Ling will certainly see plenty of familiar faces this weekend, but while he is looking forward to the reunion with friends, he knows it is strictly business once the first whistle blows.
“It will be good to see the lads again and there are a lot of very good youngsters coming through at the club who have been getting their chance,” added the 20-year-old.
“It will be good to see some old friends and hopefully progress.”
The FA Cup clash will cap a memorable week for Ling, having been a part of the England C squad for a training camp from Sunday to Tuesday.
Ling said: “I’m proud to be called up to the England C squad and I’m happy that it shows I’m impressing people off the pitch from outside the club.”