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Looking Ahead To A Week Of Cup Football

Sunday, 30 September 2018 10:38


It will be a busy week for Matt Clements and his side as they face two crucial Cup matches in a five days spell.   First up on Tuesday it is the long midweek trip to the East Coast to face Lowestoft Town in the Southern League Challenge Cup.   It will be the first meeting of the two sides for 46 years having last met in the Eastern Counties League.   St Neots were in that league for four seasons from 1969/70 until 1972/73 and in that final season both league meetings with Lowestoft finished 0-0!   Ironically that match follows on from last Saturdays 0-0 draw – only the Saints second in more than two seasons.   Since then Lowestoft enjoyed a successful period winning the ECL title in 1977/78 to win promotion to the Football Conference as well as reaching the First Round Proper of the FA Cup four times in the modern era.   This season they are in the same division as St Neots sitting eleventh in the table – just one point ahead of St Neots, having failed to win their last three league matches.  Whilst St Neots were beating Bedford Town in the Preliminary Round of this competition, Lowestoft were enjoying a bye.

Then on Saturday it is the Third Round Qualifying of the FA Cup against Coalville Town with the reward for the winners a mouth-watering £15,000 in Emirates sponsorship, but more importantly a place in the Fourth Round Qualifying of the National competition – just 90 minutes away from the entry in the competition of the Football League sides.   The Coalville visit will see (for the first time) a third consecutive home tie in the same season for St Neots in the FA Cup and our first appearance in the competition at that stage since 1978/79 when March Town United visited Shortsands to end our hopes for that season.    Coalville were due to make their first trip to St Neots in the league in February next year, but this will be a premature visit.   The Ravens as they are known come from Leicestershire and last season were members of the Northern League Premier Division where they finished 20th – well clear of the relegation zone.    In this season’s FA Cup competition, they beat Racing Club Warwick 2-1 at home in their first match before their replay victory over Buxton and their league position is very impressive – second in the table just two points behind leaders Kettering Town.   Away from home in the league this season they have beaten St Ives and Redditch, but they lost at Leiston.


John Walker





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