Woodley Town FC confident of semi-final win
May 09, 2012
Woodley Town boss Cyril Fairchild is confident his side can produce a shock this weekend and book their place in the final of the Reading Senior Cup at Madejski Stadium.
Town face local rivals Highmoor Ibis in Saturday’s match, and go in as underdogs against the side who finished second in Hellenic Division 1 East and earned promotion.
But Fairchild, who led his side on an 11-game unbeaten run, which included 10 wins, at the end of the season, admits they have nothing to fear from Highmoor and are more than capable of setting up a final date with Wokingham & Emmbrook on May 22.
However, after the original tie was rescheduled due to Highmoor’s other cup commitments, the Woodley boss insists their preparation has been far from ideal.
And with skipper Nick Edwards and striker John Donegan both unavailable, they are certainly not at full strength.
“Highmoor are a very good side with some very good individual players, but they are beatable,” said Fairchild.
“We’re unbeaten in 11 games though and Highmoor will have seen that.
“The boys can be confident going into this game off the back of that run, while Highmoor have lost their last couple.
“But at the same time we won’t have played for four or five weeks and that’s not the best preparation for a semi final.
“Highmoor have had a couple of games, whereas all we’ve been doing is training.
“There’s nothing we can do about that though.
“Hopefully we will be up for it on the day, though, because it is going to be a very tough game.”
Woodley may look to capatalise on Highmoor's dreadful disciplinary record over the season, and Fairchild is well aware of the potential that the game has to boil over.
As well as the added spark of the derby being a cup semi-final, the two sides are fairly evenly matched and will fancy their chances.
However, with Highmoor being renowned for losing their cool on the pitch, Woodley can look to utilise that to give themselves the advantage, although Fairchild knows it is not something they can rely upon.
“Highmoor have had a poor disciplinary record, but they have improved in the last few weeks,” he said.
“But hopefully that will not be an issue and we will have a good game of football and everyone will shake hands at the end.
“My main concern is that we compete.”