East Riding Senior Cup: Bridlington target Ferriby upset
BRIDLINGTON Town boss Mitch Cook wants his side to relish their underdogs tag when they face North Ferriby in tonight’s ERCFA Senior Cup semi-final.
As the current cup holders, the Seasiders do not want to loosen their grip on the silverware although they go into the game knowing the Villagers are favourites to win.
Currently sitting at the top of the EvoStik Premier Division, Ferriby already ply their trade two leagues above Bridlington, who are themselves striving to achieve promotion from the NCEL Premier Division.
Achieving promotion to the Conference North continues to be the main priority for Ferriby manager Billy Heath, who will again rotate his squad tonight.
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But regardless of who takes to the field, Brid boss Cook knows his men will have their work cut out if they are to reach the KC Stadium final.
He told the Mail: “I went to watch them recently against Whitby and they’ve got a great squad, so it’s no surprise how well they are doing in their league.
“All five of their subs would get a start for any side in our division, and probably the two above us, so they’ll be favourites no matter what side they put out.
“Obviously, we’re not used to going into games as underdogs, but there’s a place in the final up for grabs and I’m sure our lads will rise to the occasion.
“One or two of my lads probably feel they could play at a higher level, so this is the ideal stage to try and prove it.”
Whilst Bridlington go into the game with a clean bill of health following a 4-1 win at Hall Road, Ferriby are carrying a number of niggles.
Liam King (ankle), Anthony Wilson (knee) and Ryan Kendall (ankle) are definitely missing, whilst Russell Fry, Paul Foot, Gregg Anderson and Chris Bolder are all doubtful.
That means just a handful of the starting line-up which beat Hednesford 3-2 on Saturday are in contention, with the likes of Gary Bradshaw, Oliver Banks, Antoni Pecora, Rob Moy, Sam Belcher, Louis Kirk, Louis Bruce likely to come in.
New signing Rob Youhill, 25, who has joined on-loan from Harrogate Town for the rest of the season, could also be in line for his debut.
Heath explained: “At this crucial stage of the season, my priority is to manage the squad so we can complete our aim of getting promoted.
“We’ve got a number of players carrying knocks and that means we will be rotating a few players. But with the strength of our squad, I’m confident whoever we put out there will be good enough to get the win.
“Every game between now and the end of the season is a big one and it’s great for the club to be in with a chance of winning three competitions.
“There’s a place in the final at the KC up for grabs and I know all of our players will want to be involved in that.”
• Tonight’s game, at the East Riding FA’s ground on Inglemire Lane in Hull, will definitely go ahead after the pitch passed a 1pm inspection today. Kick-off 7.30pm.
Ferriby (from): Nicklin, Anderson, Gardner, Robson, Foot, Gray, Peat, Clarke, Bolder, Williams, Bradshaw, Ridley, Banks, Pecora, Moy, Belcher, Kirk, Bruce.
Bridlington: Wilberforce (GK), Fraser (GK), Aziz, Lee, Ash Allanson, Jenkinson, Silburn, Cook, Belt, Fleming (c), Hogg, Phillips, Batchelor, Logan, Greening, Allanson.