Stockport County take on fellow National League North side Curzon Ashton in the second qualifying round of the FA Cup this weekend, as they aim to reach the first round proper for the second season in a row.
The game is County’s eighth home draw in a row for domestic cup competitions, and the hope is that with the club currently unbeaten in almost year at Edgeley Park, the advantage will see County through to the next round of the competition.
Curzon Ashton, nicknamed ‘The Nash’ and formed in 1963, play their Football at the Tameside stadium. They finished 14th last term and are aiming for another season of stability after losing a number of their better players to other sides.
This season, they sit one point below the Hatters, with Jim Gannon’s side inflicting a 3-0 defeat on The Nash during the first week of the season. But John Flanagan’s side will hope to get revenge at Edgeley Park this weekend and progress to the third qualifying round.
It remains to be seen what side Gannon will play this weekend, but on past experience, he has gone with a strong side in the hope that league form benefits as a result, this was certainly the case last year as County reached the first round of the competition coupled with a push into the play-off positions.
Adam Thomas will hope to feature after returning to the starting line-up on Tuesday, whilst Gary Stopforth should return to the match day squad after missing in midweek due to an accident on the M6. Chris Smalley and Stephen O’Halloran are expected to deputise in the centre of defence for the injured Michael Clarke.
The match will be played at Edgeley Park, with the Main Stand, Cheadle End and Popular Side open for home supporters and the ‘Pop side’ will be open to away supporters.
Edgeley Park, Hardcastle Road, Stockport SK3 9DD
Admission for the game comes at a reduced cost of £10/£7/£3, as is standard for County’s FA Cup home matches. But if you’re not lucky enough to make the game. Imagine 104.9FM will have live commentary of the match, as usual.
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