Jimmy McFarlane and Hornchurch are ready for more FA Cup success ahead of preliminary round game with Aveley
PUBLISHED: 16:00 19 August 2016
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Two local clubs have a good relationship, but for 90 minutes will be determined to knock each other out of the cup
Hornchurch boss Jimmy McFarlane expects a tough FA Cup preliminary round game with Aveley tonight (Friday), but believes it is crucial they progress and pocket £1,925.
The two Ryman North clubs will do battle at Mill Field this evening (7.45pm kick-off) and a decent crowd is likely to be in attendance.
Urchins began their league season with a goalless draw at local rivals Romford last Saturday, before beating Haringey Borough in a five-goal thriller at Bridge Avenue on Tuesday.
McFarlane’s team enjoyed a good cup run during the 2015/16 campaign and reached the fourth qualifying round – just missing out on a place in the first round proper after losing 2-1 away to Boreham Wood.
The success, however, earned the club a lot of money and Hornchurch are looking to do something similar again this season.
“It is paramount to have a good run, not for survival, but it takes a lot of pressure off people that run the club finances,” said McFarlane.
“A cup run means moving a few fixtures around, but it does help the people behind the scenes.”
Urchins will expect a tough game and goals could be on the menu with Aveley’s first two matches in the Ryman North producing 15!
Hornchurch won 3-1 at Mill Field last season, but lost the return fixture at Bridge Avenue 2-1.
McFarlane added: “You always get a tough game at Aveley. Justin Gardner’s teams always have a go, no matter who they have signed up.
“We will not be taking anything for granted, but we might have to change a couple of people around because they have knocks.”
Both teams will hope for a bumper crowd at Mill Field with the match taking place a day earlier than most and gate money being split.
Aveley secretary Craig Johnson made the decision to play the tie on a Friday night to try and attract a few more fans to the clash.
McFarlane added: “Hopefully we get a decent crowd because that was the idea when Craig phoned me and suggested moving it forward a day.
“It should see an extra 50 through the gate maybe and that’s helpful to both clubs, and should make for a better atmosphere.”
Although tonight’s FA Cup tie is an away fixture, Hornchurch players should feel at home having played at Aveley’s stadium twice recently.
Urchins faced Grays Athletic at Mill Field on July 27, before ‘hosting’ rivals Billericay Town on August 5 with Bridge Avenue unavailable.
“To be fair, Aveley have been great to us. We’ve not gone there much to play them, it has been them helping us out,” said McFarlane.
“Also the season we had floodlight problems (2014/15), they allowed us to play at Mill Field and this summer we played a friendly, so I have to say a massive thank you to Craig.”
The winners visit AFC Rushden & Diamonds or Northampton Sileby Rangers in the next round.
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