Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
Danney Heale hopes the Canvey faithful can roar his Gulls to victory at Biggleswade
CANVEY boss Danny Heale has called on the hundreds of travelling Gulls fans to roar his side on to FA Cup glory at Biggleswade tomorrow.
More than 400 supporters are expected to make the trip from the island to the Carlsberg Stadium in Bedfordshire to see the sides battle for a place in the coveted first-round proper.
Heale said: “I think there are currently six spaces left on the fifth coach so we’ve had a great response and we’d like to thank everyone who is coming to support us.
“There’s also a sixth coach for (Canvey striker) Jay Curran’s family and friends from Stanford. And there are an awful lot of people driving, too so we’re hoping to have a take a big crowd with us. I think we’ll take about 350 to 400 fans with us.
“I can’t remember an away game like this attracting this much attention for Canvey in the three of four years I have been here. I don’t think we’ve had a game this big.
“But we’ve always known the backing is there. Some people only turn up for the big games but hopefully we can put on a bit of a show for them on Saturday and get them to start coming regularly every week.
“We had a bit of a blip last year where things did not go well, but we are trying to do things in the right way now. And for my first season in charge, to get this far in the FA Cup has exceeded expectations. Hopefully we can continue to keep this going and make sure we are in the draw for the next round.”
Biggleswade were scheduled to play a Calor League Premier Division match with fellow FA Cup survivors Corby Town on Wednesday evening, but the match was called off late in the day due to a water-logged pitch.
The Waders, who have claimed the scalp of Dean Holdsworth’s Chelmsford City during their run in the competition this year, come into tomorrow’s game on the back of a 4-3 league cup defeat at Arlesey Town and a 1-0 FA Trophy exit at the hands of Chesham United.
Heale said: “We’ve had Biggleswade watched and done our homework on them. They set up 4-4-2 and we don’t think they are the most mobile of sides so we’ll prepare accordingly. But that stuff can go out of the window in matches like this and it’s often just about who turns up on the day.”
Canvey’s new striker Warren McBean came off the bench for the last half-an-hour of their FA Trophy win at Heybridge Swifts last weekend, and also played the whole of an internal club friendly on Tuesday.
Heale said: “He was a bit rusty so we just wanted to ease him back in against Heybridge but he came through 90 minutes against the reserves this week and looked a lot better. He’ll be in contention to start on Saturday.”
Apart from long-term injury victim James Hawes (groin), Heale says he’s got the “welcome headache” of a fully fit squad to pick from.