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McFarlane set to rotate his Hornchurch side for Trophy

PUBLISHED: 17:00 06 October 2017

Jimmy McFarlane looks on (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Jimmy McFarlane looks on (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Hornchurch will begin their FA Trophy campaign with a trip to Thamesmead Town this weekend.

The Urchins will face the Bostik South outfit at Dartford’s Princes Park on Sunday (2pm) at and will be hoping to progress into the next round.

Manager Jim McFarlane admits he would rather be in league action, but will be taking the competition seriously despite revealing he may have to rotate the squad.

“I would have liked a league game as we don’t want too many teams getting league points while we’re not playing, but it’s a big cup and certainly one I’ll take seriously,” he said.

“We’re going to have to play Sunday and Tuesday [at home against Barking] this week, so we’ll have to be a bit clever with the team selection.”

McFarlane says he’s looking forward to the Trophy tie and revealed they haven’t set too many targets for the competition, adding: “I’m looking forward to it, I know the manager at Thamesmead really well.

“We’re just going to take it game by game. I personally don’t think Conference sides should be allowed in it as it’s a cup for amateur clubs and nine out of 10 of the clubs in that league are full-time, which I think is unfair.

“We just want to have as long a run as possible.”

The boss knows what to expect from the opposition, who previously played in the same division as Urchins last season, adding: “I know some of their players, they’ve been around non-league for some time, so I probably know about 50 per cent of them.

“I know they’ll work hard, they’ll be very attacking as all Tommy Warren teams. They’ll be very attack-minded, but we’re very good defensively so that doesn’t bother me.”

Hornchurch could bag £3,000 in prize money if they progress and McFarlane admits it’s not as luxurious as the FA Cup – after going out at Hereford last weekend – but it’s important to keep winning.

“You don’t get the same financial rewards, but it’s just about continuing to win games of football and keeping that momentum going,” he added.

“The next two games will be squad games, just because of tiredness. It’s alright having tired legs, but you can pull muscles and with such a small squad, we can’t afford any more injuries.”

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