Stamford aim to swap FA Cup frustration for survival success

Action from Stamford's FA Cup defeat against Hednesford.
Action from Stamford's FA Cup defeat against Hednesford.
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Stamford AFC skipper Richard Jones insists the frustration of the club’s FA Cup exit will fuel their bid for Evo-Stik League Northern Premier Division survival.

The Daniels {missed out on history on Saturday (October 26) when failing in their bid to reach the first round proper of the FA Cup for the first time.|Stamford were beaten 2-0 by higher-level Hednesford Town|read the report} in front of a bumper Vic Couzens Stadium crowd of 668. The match was settled by the award of two second-half penalties, both of which were converted by visiting player Elliott Durrell.

The club’s focus immediately shifted from a potential Cup money-spinner against a professional club to ensuring they retain their Northern Premier Division status.

Stamford are currently in the relegation zone following promotion last season, but Jones insists staying up is ‘a must’.

He said: “The FA Cup has been a nice distraction, but it has gone now and our full focus will be on staying up.

“It is a must for the club to be playing Northern Premier Division football next season when moving into the new ground.

“Every single person in our dressing room was disappointed to have gone out of the FA Cup.

“We’re proud of the fact we came so close to making a bit of history, but it just wasn’t to be.

“I felt both penalties were big calls to make. They both looked pretty harsh to say the least.

“It was a great feeling to play in front of such a big crowd and I just want to say a big thank-you to everyone who came out and supported us.
“We’re gutted we couldn’t give them the result they wanted, but we gave our all.”

The Daniels return to the league grind on Tuesday (October 29) when they travel to Rushall Olympic.

They were beaten by the Midlands side in a seven-goal thriller at the Vic Couzens Stadium earlier in the season.