Horsham YMCA go into FA Vase first round ‘favourites’ against Kensington Borough

Football, FA Cup, first qualifying round.''Horsham YMCA v Tooting & Micham.''Pictured is Horsham's Manager, Pete Buckland.    ''Horsham, Mid Sussex. ''Picture: Liz Pearce 08/09/2018''LP181382 SUS-180809-220125008
Football, FA Cup, first qualifying round.''Horsham YMCA v Tooting & Micham.''Pictured is Horsham's Manager, Pete Buckland. ''Horsham, Mid Sussex. ''Picture: Liz Pearce 08/09/2018''LP181382 SUS-180809-220125008

Horsham YMCA boss Peter Buckland believes his side go into their FA Vase first round home tie against Kensington Borough on Saturday as favourites.

The Gorings Mead outfit are on a high after an impressive start to the season and after losing to the eventual winners of the competition last year, their manager has high hopes.

Borough are currently sitting 14th in the Combined Counties League Division 1 aften picking up ten points from 11 games.

YM meanwhile have started the season well and sit second in the SCFL Premier Division having won eight of their ten matches.

Buckland admitted he didn’t know much about Saturday’s opponents but felt that his side were favourites on paper. He said: “I know as much about Kensington Borough as I do about Winnie the Pooh.

“All I know is they play in the Combined Counties League Division One so on paper, and I do stress on paper, we’ve got to be favourites so we’re going to have to make sure that comes to fruition.

“We won’t take it lightly. Football is a weird game at the best of times so we’ve just got to make sure we put the game to bed and we’re in the draw for Monday.”

Horsham YMCA were knocked out of the FA Vase at this stage last season as they conceded two late goals in a 2-1 away defeat to Hellenic League side Thatcham Town, who would go on to beat Stockton Town 1-0 in the final at Wembley.

Buckland believes that result shows they can more than hold their own against any side in the competition and he sees the Vase as a tournament that his team can realistically win.

He added: “We did go out to the eventual winners with two late goals but we more than matched them toe-to-toe and we were very unfortunate that day.

“When you look right across the country at Step 5 tables, we’re in a healthy position as anybody else is within their own league.

“It’s a competition that the club, as well as me and the players, take very seriously because you’re only playing teams at your own step level.

“Unlike the FA Cup which is purely a money competition, this is a realistic competition for us to get to Wembley.”

YM go into the clash fresh from a break after having a free weekend on Saturday due to scheduled opponents Lancing’s involvement in the FA Cup.

n Steyning Town will also be bidding to make it to the second round of the FA Vase on Saturday.

Town, who needed penalties to overcome Punjab United in the previous round, welcome Combined Counties League Premier Division Walton & Hersham to The Shooting Field for a first round proper tie.