We will need to be at our best to get a result at Raynes Park Vale, says Stansfeld boss Jamie Phipps
STANSFELD joint-manager Jamie Phipps says he has done his homework ahead of their trip to Raynes Park Vale in the last 32 of The FA Vase tomorrow.
Stansfeld are now in second-place in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division table, having picked up 43 points from their 18 league outings.
They have recently lost top spot to Sutton Athletic, whom have played a couple of games more and have collected one more point.
This is Stansfeld’s longest ever run in The FA Vase and they head to south-west London in high spirits having beaten Bagshot (3-1), Worthing United (5-1), Staplehurst Monarchs United (3-1), Badshot Lea (2-1) and Frimley Green (3-1).
Raynes Park Vale play in the Premier Division of the Combined Counties League and are in seventh-place in the South Division with 33 points from 17 games.
They have beaten Steyning Town Community (3-1), Welling Town (4-0), Redhill (2-0), Blackfield & Langley (6-2), and Crawley Down Gatwick (4-0) to reach this far.
Raynes Park Vale played their first game in four weeks when they went down to a 2-1 defeat at Horley Town – and Phipps was there to do his homework.
“We eventually got to see Raynes Park on Tuesday after they had a few games cancelled due to Covid and the weather,” said Phipps.
“Although they lost the game they were a very good side and you can see why they are doing well in their league. They are solid at the back and very good through midfield and in attack, so we will have to defend very well, which has been a big strength of ours this season.
“If we stay tight at the back we know we will cause them problems going forward.”
Stansfeld, a homeless Bermondsey team, are a well-drilled outfit, one that plays for each other and are plotting another cup upset as an amateur side.
“We have beaten two teams from their division in the competition, one placed below and the other above so we will need to be at our best to get a result,” added Phipps.
“We have only played two league games since the last round of the Vase for different reasons, against sides around us.
“We didn’t play well against Sutton Athletic getting a 2-2 draw and it was clear to see that we hadn’t played for four weeks or so.
“We were then away at Tooting Bec and played very well on a really difficult pitch so we are in good shape for Saturday.
“Raynes Park were there so it was good to perform as we did and win well.”
Phipps hopes their trip to Grand Drive ends in victory and a place in the last sixteen.
“On the injury front we still have Joe Minter out but Frankie Beale is back in light training after his ankle break and it is fantastic to have him with the group,” revealed Phipps.
“Fortunately since our outbreak in December, we have been Covid free.
“Even though it is a relatively short journey we will be getting a coach there as is our routine in the Vase and we are hopeful of having a good following.
“Whatever the result we will be sure to have a few beers on the way back, hopefully celebratory ones.”
Tomorrow’s game at Grand Drive kicks off at 14:00.
Raynes Park Vale v Stansfeld
The Buildbase FA Vase Fourth Round
Saturday 15 January 2022
Kick Off 2:00pm
at Grand Drive, Raynes Park, London SW20 9DZ