Friday, October 09, 2009

FC United out to turn on Celtic charm

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 09, 2009

FC UNITED boss Karl Marginson insists his rebel Reds are ready to rise to the challenge of being underdogs in Sunday's eagerly- anticipated FA Cup third qualifying-round derby with Stalybridge Celtic at Gigg Lane.

Steve Burr's slick Celts will start as favourites, having thrashed FC's UniBond premier rivals Stocksbridge 7-2 in the last round and having climbed to fifth in Blue Square North.

But Marginson's men, too, are cock-a-hoop in the wake of Wednesday's crushing 4-0 victory over Nantwich.

Marginson, himself a former Stalybridge star, said: "Bridge are a quality side with some quality players. If we're to win, we know we're going to have to be at the top of our game and hope they're not quite at theirs."

FC cup hopes

FC, who have never before reached the Cup's penultimate qualifying stage, are expecting a crowd in excess of 3,000 for a tie which has been put back by 24 hours due to Bury being in action at Gigg Lane.

Meanwhile, in tomorrow's ties involving other North West sides, Andy Preece's Northwich are expected to ease past visiting Chorley, while Radcliffe travel to Workington confident of earning a replay.

Having drawn 2-2 at Hyde in midweek, minnows Salford City will attempt to finish the job at Moor Lane in what promises to be a fascinating second qualifying-round replay.

Elsewhere, on-song Altrincham, unbeaten in their last seven Blue Square Premier starts, take on fourth-placed Mansfield at Moss Lane.

In the day's only Blue Square North fixture, table-topping Droylsden visit lowly Harrogate.

UniBond premier pacesetters Ashton United go to Boston, while, in division one north, promotion hopefuls Curzon Ashton visit Ossett and Trafford entertain Garforth.