It would be great for everyone involved to get the club its first FA Cup win and make history, says Rusthall joint-boss Andrew McKechnie

Friday 10th August 2018

RUSTHALL joint-manager Andrew McKechnie says he wants to create history by winning their first game in The FA Cup on Sunday.

The Rustics will lock horns with Sussex side Wick in the Extra Preliminary Round. The game has been switched to Culverden Stadium, the home of their league rivals Tunbridge Wells, while pitch improvements take place at Jockey Farm.

Rusthall are in thirteenth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division table after losing 5-2 at Canterbury City on the opening day of the season.

The Rustics then beat Crowborough Athletic 3-1 in east Sussex in midweek, leaving the Crows at the foot of the table after two games.

“Our first game away to Canterbury was a tough fixture to start, although we played well in large parts of the game our defending was naïve,” said McKechnie.

“We came up against a side that will play a similar style to a lot of the sides in the league so it was a learning curve and although the scoreline would not suggest it, there were positives to take from the game and gave us lots to work on and improve.

“Crowborough, although it was only both teams second game of the season it was important to get three points on the board.

“We didn't play as good football as we had been playing but we were far more effective and deserved the three points. The result gives us a good platform to build on.”

Rusthall played CB Hounslow United at Culverden Stadium at this stage of The FA Cup last season and McKechnie is looking forward to the Wick game on Sunday at the same venue.

“We are of course looking forward to the game on Sunday and although it is a shame to not be at home we are thankful for Tunbridge Wells for hosting us,” said the Rusthall joint-boss.

“It is a difficult task to start the season with effectively seven away games but in the long run it is great for the club as when the pitch is finished it will be a fantastic surface to play football on.

“It's difficult to know what to expect from Wick. I know they have had the luxury of watching us, we have been told they will be physical and try to mix it up. We will try to play football and be entertaining.

“It's another game to gel our team together as most of the team are new, we like most clubs we are finding the holiday period frustrating but at this level it is a common theme. 

“For us it's all about improvement, we have been seeing this improvement since the start of pre-season and we will carry on getting better.

“We are very lucky to have two of the best coaches around in Alan Murray and Alan Rogers and their work is already starting to translate onto the pitch, along with the handful of players last year and some top signings we have real quality to work.

“At this stage it would be great for everyone involved to get the club its first FA Cup win and make history.”

Rusthall will scoop £2,250 in prize money should they send Wick crashing out of The FA Cup – and chairman Joe Croker has given them a motivation to win their first game in the competition.

McKechnie revealed: “The prize money, Joe kindly allows the players decide what happens with the money, so if they want more money to play with, they best win!”

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Rusthall  v  Wick
The Emirates FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round
Sunday 12 August 2018
Kick Off 3:00pm
at Culverden Stadium, Culverden Down, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN4 9SG