Inspired by music from the The Quireboys and the vocal backing of the travelling fans the Spartans secured a hard fought FA Cup victory at Mickleover Sports on Saturday.
Manager Tom Wade said: “After the pre-match warm up we made sure all the lads came off the pitch together past the massed green and white supporters so they could understand and feel the passion of the fans who were just brilliant all day. We also had the Quireboys’ Spartans song, which was specially recorded for the club before we played Blackburn Rovers in 2009, playing loud in the dressing room just before kickoff. It got the lads really buzzing!”
Regarding the game itself Wade commented: “It was a tough game and probably not the best in the world but we battled well and eventually it told. We had the best chances and showed our usual endeavour. When Robbie [Dale] put us on up we should have really gone on to score two or three more. Mickleover were a strong side although they played the aerial game a lot. Robbie had another great game for us. Mickleover had obviously done their homework on him, with two or three of them around him most of the time. We had some great displays out there but I thought young Ryan Hutchinson at centre back was the Man of the Match. The best player on the park by miles.”
The hosts equalised just before the interval but Blyth scored again in added time when Jarrett Rivers popped up to fire home after more good work by Dale.
“You have to feel for Mickleover,” thought Wade. “They are a great club with great supporters and great management. It was tough for them to take – soul destroying, but it was fantastic for us!”
Wade is hoping for a home tie in Monday’s draw for the fourth qualifying round, although maybe it doesn’t matter either way….
“A game at Croft Park would be great but as we’ve played the vast majority of our recent games away from home we’re used to it. And with fans turning up like on Saturday an away game can feel like a home one!”