JOHN HASELDIN says his Holywell Town players are relishing their Welsh Cup second round clash with Guilsfield at Halkyn Road.
The Wellmen return to action after a two-week fixture break following a narrow 1-0 reverse in the Cymru Alliance League Cup to rivals Flint Town United a fortnight ago left a bitter taste.
“People always talk about a break being a good thing, but after the Flint game we wanted to play again the next day to put it right,” said Haseldin. “Guilsfield is really big challenge for us and in the last four games we’ve played each other the result could have gone either way.
“Their workrate is probably the best in the league and we have to match that and the collective mentality that has served them well this year.
“But this is an ideal chance for us to put things right and for us to do well again in the Welsh Cup, which we’ve done in the last six seasons or so.”
Danny Desormeaux and Matty Kendrick are set to return for the Wellmen, while the club await international clearance for new signings Mike Jones and Morgan Jones.
Former Gresford Athletic boss Eddie Maurice-Jones takes his Denbigh Town side to Llandudno Junction in the other all-Cymru Alliance affair, while current Clappers Lane manager Steve Halliwell is wary of the threat posed by in-form Conwy Borough ahead of their home tie.
The free-scoring Welsh Alliance side have netted 32 times in eight league games this term, with the prolific Corrig McGonigle in fine form.
And Halliwell has instructed his defenders to nullify the striker’s threat in the contest.
Halliwell said: “They’re a very decent side and McGonigle is clearly their danger man and we’ll have a plan to deal with him.
“But we’re the Cymru Alliance side and we should be imposing ourselves on the game in attack with our quality.
“This is a great chance for us to progress in the cup and for the club to make some money this season.”
Despite boasting an injury-free squad for the tie, Halliwell has hinted he will make changes to his regular starting XI.
Airbus manager Andy Thomas expects opponents Saltney Town to treat the second round clash ‘like a cup final’.
With the Wingmakers a prized scalp in the Cymru Alliance, Thomas has suggested that many visiting teams have upped their game at the Airfield.
And he expects more of the same in tomorrow’s all-Flintshire cup tie against the Welsh National League outfit, with Airbus looking to atone for their 3-1 humbling at Rhyl last week.
He said: “We know exactly how Saltney will be approaching the game. This will be like a cup final for them and a chance to cause a big upset at our ground. “It’s been the same for most of the season to be fair when teams have come here, sat deep and put players behind the ball.
“We have to find a way past them and take the chances that come our way.
“There won’t be any complacency on our part and we’ll be looking to get back on track after a disappointing result in the league last week.”
The clash is arguably the biggest game in Saltney’s history and joint boss Marc Edwards is delighted with the interest the contest has brought to the club.
He said: “The mood in the camp is one of excitement.
“It’s surprising how much interest the game has brought. I keep seeing people in the street who say that they will be there and are looking forward to it.
“Obviously we know that it will be a real challenge, and that we will need to be at our best even just to compete, but these are a great set of lads and, should they all play to their potential at the same time, who knows.”
Saltney have all of the players involved in last week’s win over Coedpoeth available, with both Daniel Burgess and Luke Douglas to come in. Airbus will be without the suspended Stefan Edwards for the game, while attacking midfielder George Peers is in line to start after impressing scoring as a substitute last week.
Brickfield Rangers see the clash against Ruthin Town as a true measure of their progress, especially as they have ambitions of making it to the Cymru Alliance next season.
Rangers boss Simon Sedgwick said: “As a club we are looking forward to playing against a team from a higher league as we will use it as a benchmark. It is also a great opportunity of course for us to progress in the Welsh Cup.”
Callum Cross will be added to this week’s Brickfield squad.
Buckley Town boss Dan Moore is able to announce a clean bill of health at The Globe ahead of their clash with Cymru Alliance strugglers Llandudno Albion.
Penley stalwart Dave Bithell admitted that tomorrow’s clash with Porthmadog will probably be the biggest game in the clubs history. Bithell said: “Obviously we will be giving it our best shot but without a league win in seven starts we clearly will be the underdogs.”
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