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St Albans City boss wary of FA Cup tie at Chatham Town
St Albans City joint manager Graham Golds has warned his side against complacency in their FA Cup fourth qualifying round tie at Chatham Town.
The Saints moved within one win of the first round proper after toppling Conference South side Tonbridge Angels 2-1 last weekend.
But although they will be favourites when they face Ryman One North opposition in the next round on Saturday, October 26, Golds is wary of over-confidence.
He said: “We just knocked out a side from a higher league so Chatham will be trying to do the same thing to us. On paper it looks a nice draw but they will be looking to upset us. If we don’t turn up on the day they have a chance to beat us. But if we apply ourselves then I don’t think there will be a problem. It is all down to us.
“They are struggling a bit in the league but they will be so up for it because they’re the underdogs. It’s going to be tough and we need to make sure we’re not complacent when we go there.”
The Saints dumped Tonbridge out of the competition on Saturday after a deserved victory at Clarence Park.
An excellent goal from John Frendo fired the hosts into the lead but Mark Lovell headed Angels level just before the break.
St Albans kept up the pressure in the second half and were rewarded with a 73rd minute winner from Mark Nwokeji.
Golds said: “We needed a reaction after the draw against Bedford Town last week. In football you only get what you put in and we felt we didn’t put enough into the Bedford match.
“We felt we could beat Tonbridge if we put the effort in and were really happy with the result and performance.
“It was nice to put in the performance and then the lads managed to get the reward they deserved. Everyone put in 150 per cent and I couldn’t fault any of the players.
“Everyone from the back four to the front two put a shift in and got what they deserved.”
Golds added “We took the initiative with a great goal. Frendo’s finish was outstanding but there was great work from Nwokeji.
“When they managed to equalise it was a bit of a kick in the teeth for us. But we said to the lads they had done well and we just needed to keep going and take advantage of playing down the slope in the second half.
“We looked a bit tired late on in the first half but in the second period we seemed to have a new lease of life and we could have even scored another goal after our winner.”
Young keeper Tom Coulton made his FA Cup debut after Paul Bastock missed out with a rib injury and the manager has no concerns about keeping him in the side over the coming weeks.
Golds said: “It was his second game after playing in the cup final last season when he was outstanding. He's been playing in the Capital League this season and we are really impressed with him. He’s definitely got a future. He’s so hard to beat in training and is a great shot stopper. There are a few things he needs to work on but that will come with experience.
“He was with Arsenal Youth for a long time so the pedigree is there.
“Paul is a man's man but you've got to make sure you don't come back too soon with a rib injury so we're happy to put Tom in for the next couple and then take it from there.”
The Saints travel to Leighton Town in the Red Insure Cup tonight but attention then turns to the FA Trophy first qualifying round tie at Ryman One North side Witham Town on Saturday.
Golds said: “I went to watch them a few weeks ago and they're [Witham] a decent outfit who are strong and quite pacy up top. It will be a battle at their ground and they will be up for it.”
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