The Head Coach's notes in the Forest Green Rovers programme
Good afternoon everyone and may I start by offering a warm welcome to everyone associated with Forest Green Rovers who has made the journey across from Gloucestershire today. We have watched them a few times this season and they are a very good team who deserve their place at the top of the National League. They are involved in a real tussle with Cheltenham for that one automatic promotion place and we wish them well for the season, after this tie is settled.
It’s a tough draw, but we have home advantage and have been playing well recently so it sets up what should be a cracking contest. It will have national and international exposure with the TV cameras here and there is potentially a massive prize awaiting the winners in the next round. That all adds to the occasion and makes it a game we desperately want to win.
We will come in to it off the back of a great run of results and with the club at the top of the League 2 table. It’s a nice feeling but if I’m honest I am more interested in the five point gap between us and the fourth-placed team at the moment. Our aim is to keep that gap and if possible extend it, with the league our overriding priority.
Both Dagenham and Newport are fighting for their lives at the wrong end of the table and we knew that Hartlepool would be the same last Saturday. As we expected it was a gruelling match on a difficult surface and with the wind making it hard to get the ball down and play. And yet when we needed to, we found a way to win the game thanks to a great run from Alex MacDonald and a good finish from Danny Hylton. Winning those close games in trying conditions makes such a difference come the end of the season.
Our first job is to start December the right way and get through in the FA Cup. I thought you were fantastic in following us all the way to Hartlepool last week, so get behind us again today and let’s make sure it is our name in the hat tomorrow night.
You can read the full notes, and much more besides in the match programme, available for £2 from the ground or get the online version at www.matchdayfix.com/oufc.