Clitheroe FC boss praises Warrington Town’s FA Cup run

Simon Garner battles for the ball.
Simon Garner battles for the ball.
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Clitheroe are without a game this weekend - but player-boss Simon Garner takes inspiration from previously-scheduled opponents Warrington Town, who have reached the second round of the FA Cup.

The Blues were due to face Shaaun Reid’s Yellows on Saturday, but Town, having embarked on one of the most remarkable runs in the cup in recent history, instead travel to Vanarama Conference side Gateshead.

The Evo-Stik First Division North side have played eight fixtures to reach this stage - beating Barton Town Old Boys and Trafford, overcoming Sheffield and Frank Sinclair’s Colwyn Bay in replays, and moving on to 1-0 wins over North Ferriby United and League Two club Exeter City.

Garner, who himself reached the first round with FC Halifax Town in 2011, said: “It’s an unbelievable achievement for them to get to the second round of the FA Cup. It’s hard to comprehend that our game has been postponed for that reason.

“It’s possible to miss a game when your opponent is playing in the FA Trophy, which is still a big achievement when you’re still in that competition at this time of year. But this is massive for Warrington Town.

“I watched the last round on TV. They did really well and deserved to go through. They might even get into the draw for the third round yet as well, so fair play to them.”

He added: “It’s great advertisement for the club because they’ve had plenty of coverage. They’ve done superb, it’s been an amazing run and it’s something that might not happen again for a long time.

“I’ve always had belief, and Warrington Town have shown what can be done. I played in the first round of the FA Cup and it was an amazing experience. They’ve gone one better.”

Garner, who raised £266 during Movember, is now looking ahead to a cup voyage of his own. On Tuesday the Blues travel to the Sir Tom Finney Stadium to tackle Bamber Bridge in the quarter-final of the LFA Trophy.

“It’s our only hope of silverware,” he said. “We’re aiming for the top 10 in the league but the LFA Trophy is a competition we’re going to have a good go at.

“We’re two games away from the final at the Macron Stadium in Bolton.

“Bamber Bridge have won six games on the bounce and they’re a team I’ve never beaten during my time as manager.

“I’ve lost against them three times. I’m desperate to put one over on them. There’s no reason why we can’t go and get a result. We’ll be fresh for Tuesday.”