Our FA Cup win over Punjab was just an amazing night, it’s the best game of football that I have been involved in, says Stansfeld joint-manager Billy Hamlin
STANSFELD joint-manager Billy Hamlin says their FA Cup debut proved to be an unforgettable night.
The club pulled off an upset after beating Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division side Punjab United 4-3 on penalties after an enthralling game finished 3-3 after 90 minutes.
Stansfeld’s FA Cup debut attracted a record crowd of 269 at Foxbury Avenue and Hamlin was delighted with their big night.
“It was just an amazing night, it’s the best game of football that I have been involved in,” he said.
“If we would have been 3-0 up at half-time that would have been too easy and at Stansfeld nothing is done easy, there is always some drama.
“There was a few of the boys who I think the occasion got to them a little bit and we were very shaky at the start and to be fair to Punjab they took advantage.
“But one thing we have been good at in the last season or so is staying in games and we know within the group there is a real never-say-die attitude, even though we were 2-0 down at half-time, we always believed if we got the next goal we would go on to win the tie, which we did.
“The way the boys took their penalties to handle the pressure in front of a big crowd I thought was magnificent and with Charlie Cottrell in goal we have always got a chance and the scenes at the final whistle unbelievable and something that I will never forget.”
It was a case of After the Lord Mayor’s show at Lydd Town last Saturday, with Stansfeld suffering a 6-3 opening day defeat in the First Division.
“It wasn’t great,” admitted Hamlin.
“Take nothing away from Lydd, they were good upfront and very sharp but if me and Jamie are honest we saw it coming.
“We were very flat after Wednesday night because in the second half on Wednesday our whole team sprinted for 45 minutes and to be honest we were tired.
“We had a lot of injuries and there were probably two or three who shouldn’t have played on Saturday but once again we found ourselves 2-0 down.
“We showed great character getting it back to 2-2 but we just ran out of steam and I can’t really fault the lads because after the FA Cup tie, they have been really focused on this game so we have rested up in the week, had a couple of light training sessions and we are ready to go.”
Stansfeld welcome Little Common to Foxbury Avenue tomorrow in The FA Cup Preliminary Round.
The Sussex side beat AFC Uckfield Town 1-0 in their FA Cup tie and have drawn their first two Southern Combination Premier Division outings against East Preston (2-2) and the side that beat in The FA Cup (1-1).
“It’s another test from a team in the League above so we know we are in for a hard game, slightly different from the last round when it was under lights midweek, a drizzly night but tomorrow is a Saturday three o’clock afternoon FA Cup tie, so we are looking forward to it,” added Hamlin.
“I know nothing about tomorrow’s opponents to be honest with you. We know they had a player sent-off last Saturday, so they could be missing one or two. Obviously you look at their results but we have just got to set up with the mindset although we are at home and we are the underdogs and our boys thrive on that so we know we are in for a tough task but we are ready.
“The FA Cup means absolutely everything to us, the club has got to be one of the oldest clubs in The FA Cup and to be in it for the first time in our 123-year history is something so special to all of us that are involved.
“It’s such an honour for me and Jamie Phipps to be managing the club in The FA Cup and it’s just reward for all the hard work that is put in off the field by the committee to put us in the position to be in The FA Cup.
“I have been up the club 25 years and including the committee I have been here the shortest time, so I think that tells you everything you need to know about our club.
“To see Tumble, Lushy and Rooney’s faces as we come back in the dressing room on Wednesday and how much it means to them was something I will never forget.”
Stansfeld v Little Common
The Emirates FA Cup Preliminary Round
Saturday 12 September 2020
Kick Off 3:00pm
at Foxbury Avenue, off Perry Street, Chislehurst, Kent BR7 6SD