FA Cup preview: ‘Great chance’ for Deeping Rangers

Celebrations for Deeping in the replay win over Leek last week
Celebrations for Deeping in the replay win over Leek last week

Deeping Rangers boss Michael Goode knows his side will need to hit top form for another cup upset.

But he insists they have “a great chance” of ending AFC Rushden & Diamonds’ 30-match unbeaten run having already knocked out Boston Town, Dereham Town and Leek Town at the Haydon Whitham Stadium.

Goode said: “It was good to have this week off after the disappointment of a draw at home to Rothwell Corinthians last Saturday.

“We missed chances – including a penalty – and gave away a silly goal.

“But since then we’ve regrouped and it was a good training session on Tuesday night where we highlighted what we need to do against Diamonds.

“Any unbeaten run must come to an end at some point and that could be the case here on Saturday.

“They can’t carry on like this forever. I’ve experienced that myself as a player with Deeping when we went 29 league games unbeaten. The pressure builds up and it’s a tremendous effort to keep going.

“We are at home where we have found our best form and we usually perform better in front of a bigger crowd.

“We’ve already knocked out two sides from Step Four and if we play to the best of our ability then we’ve got a great chance of winning this game as well.

“We will put pressure on ourselves to perform well. If we lose then we’ll hold our hands up knowing that we’ve been beaten by a better team.

“We need our own game to be spot on. We know Diamonds have added two or three players of real quality at the next level.

“This is a huge day for our club and hopefully the community will support us.

“Diamonds will probably bring 250 to 300 fans but a lot of people around Deeping are taking a big interest in this game. Let’s hope they come back after Saturday as well.”

Winger Jason Kilbride – who joined Deeping on dual registration from Diamonds – has been given permission by manager Andy Peaks to play against his parent club.

Peaks said: “Deeping are a good side and we know a bit about them. It’s a massive game and each time we are in the FA Cup I will say it’s the biggest match of the season.”

Defender Jack Cotton is likely to be back in the Deeping squad after a hamstring injury.