Gordon Bartlett almost wishes Wealdstone’s upcoming FA Trophy tie with Brackley was an away match given the support they receive from the travelling Stones faithful.
Stones will host the Saints in the last 16 tie on February 4 after Brackley saw off fellow Conference North outfit Stockport County 2-0 in a replay last night.
While Bartlett is hopeful of drawing a big crowd to the Vale, the atmosphere generated by the travelling support in their win at Southport on Saturday has given him an idea.
“Perhaps we should hire a coach, take the supporters on a little trip, bring them back to the bar and then let them loose,” he joked.
For Bartlett, the draw was as much about who they didn’t want out of the hat as who they did.
“I was asked Sunday evening who I wanted and it was more about what we didn’t want, he added.
“We didn’t want Sutton or Boreham Wood and we avoided those two. Perhaps it would have been nice to get York City who are a big club but one struggling at the minute in the Conference National.
“We’ve ended up with a club at our level, so of a similar standing and having a similar sort of season.
“If we perform to the level we did against Southport we will have a chance.”
The tie will evoke memories of the last game between the two sides, also in the FA Trophy, seven years ago, when goalkeeper Jonathan North dropped out with illness en route to Brackley forcing defender Sean Cronin between the sticks.
He famously kept a clean sheet in a 1-0 win.
The same result would be nice – but perhaps without the drama.