NEW TIGER? Ngoni Dongo (in blue) is close to signing for Holbeach United.

Holbeach United bidding to cause an Emirates FA Cup upset at Dereham

Holbeach United are plotting an Emirates FA Cup upset on Saturday as they make the trip to Ryman League Division One North side Dereham Town (3pm).

The Tigers, who have enjoyed great success in the competition in recent years, go into the first qualifying round clash as slight underdogs.

Player/boss Tom Roberts, who is without suspended skipper Jamie Stevens, banned striker Stuart Eason and fellow frontman Josh Ford, is confident of victory at Aldiss Park after seeing fellow UCL side Yaxley push them all the way in the last round.

He also hopes to have midfielder Ngoni Dongo, formerly of Spalding United, signed up ahead of the trip to Norfolk.

Roberts said: “I’m very much looking forward to Saturday.

“Obviously it’s going to be a tough one, Dereham are a good side that play at a higher level.

“But I’m confident that, if we go there and apply ourselves, we’ll have a great chance of causing an upset.

“I’ve had them watched a few times and it’s fair to say that I know their strengths and weaknesses.

“We know what to expect from them, but I’ll be keeping that to myself!

“Everybody says it, but obviously the FA Cup is about finances at this level. Last year we got some great exposure through the competition – hopefully we can manage both this season.

“We obviously want to go as far as we can. It’s a one-off cup game so anything is possible.”

Should the game finish level at 90 minutes, Carter’s Park will host a replay on Wednesday night. That would mean the scheduled derby at Boston Town (7.45pm) would have to be rescheduled.

That’s not necessarily something Holbeach would want, with games against the Poachers always ones to remember.

Roberts added: “Boston have had a few problems so far this season, but it’s always a tough game.

“We’ll go there full of confidence after the start we’ve had and would back ourselves to pick up three points.”

Be it a replay against Dereham or a derby at Boston, both Stevens and Eason will be available again following their respective bans.

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