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Cards hope for Trophy run

Brian Caffarey - 28th November 2013

Cards hope for Trophy run Hereford United v Woking
FA Trophy 1st Round
3pm on Saturday 30 November 2013

It’s a long time since the Cards had a decent cup run, so getting past Hereford in the Trophy on Saturday would be quite an achievement. However, the Bulls have not been in great form this season and, like Woking, are probably more focused on securing their Conference Premier status. If Garry Hill’s side can cut out the sloppy defending that undermined their cause at Cambridge last weekend, they might just fancy their chances at Edgar Street.

WOKING

The problem of conceding early goals was all too evident at the Abbey Stadium, with the Cards in effect throwing the game away in the first 15 minutes as a hesitant, error-prone defence handed the U’s a two-goal lead. It was very frustrating since thereafter the Cards looked as if they could have given their hosts a difficult afternoon, with Woking having more possession and more of the attacking play – even if a very efficient Cambridge defence rarely looked in trouble.

Mike Cestor replaced Jack Parkinson at half-time at Cambridge and might well be hoping to be in the starting eleven at Edgar Street, with Brett Johnson still not fully back in action following his hamstring injury.

Presumably, Woking’s new loan signing, the returning Keiran Murtagh, will play some part on Saturday, given that there will be no issue about his being cup-tied. If so, it will be interesting to see how he is accommodated alongside Josh Payne, who can also pick a pass from central midfield.

The winners of Saturday’s game will net £5k in prize money – not to be sneezed at by either club. The winners of the competition will receive nearly £100k in prize money from all rounds, so, while some fans might think it a distraction from the fight for league survival, the financial rewards from a good Trophy run are potentially significant.

HEREFORD UNITED

Hereford are having a difficult season, hampered by their precarious financial position. They currently lie in 17th place in the table, two places and five points above Woking, having played one game more. After a reasonably bright start to the season their form dipped in September/October, with only two wins in 12 league and cup games. But results have picked up recently and they are now unbeaten in their last four games, including a 3-0 away thumping of Southport and a 3-2 win at home over FC Halifax Town in midweek in which they twice had to come from behind to claim all three points.

Familiar names include striker Michael Rankine and midfielder Rob Purdie, although the latter has recently been out injured. They have just signed Micah Evans, a 20 year-old winger on a youth loan from Burnley.

GETTING THERE

Edgar Street Athletic Ground
Blackfriars Street
Hereford
HR4 9JU

Official website: www.herefordunited.co.uk

By coach
The Cards Trust coach leaves Kingfield at 10.30am. The cost is £17 for Trust members and £22 for non-members. To book a seat on the coach please ring (01483 772470) the Club Shop or email shop@wokingfc.co.uk

By car
Exit the M4 at junction 15, head north on the A419, keep straight on to the A417. Remain on the A417, cross under the M5 and then join the A40. At the Wilton Roundabout join the A49, signposted Hereford. At Hereford remain on the A49, at the 1st roundabout take the 2nd exit, which is the A49 north, over the River Wye. Having crossed the river, go through two sets of traffic lights, remaining in the left-hand lane and following the signs to Leominster. At the next roundabout remain in the left-hand lane and take the 1st exit again sign-posted Leominster and on the A49. The football ground is then 150 yards on your right.

By train
It’s a complicated train journey from Woking to Hereford, involving at least two changes, usually via Basingstoke and Reading. Look up www.nationalrail.co.uk or www.thetrainline.com if you are thinking of making the journey.

ADMISSION PRICES

Reduced admission prices have been agreed for this game:

Adults: £12 (Seats) / £10 (Terrace)
Concessions: £8 (Seats / Terrace)
Children u14: £3 (Seats / Terrace)

LAST SEASON

Hereford United 2 Woking 1
4 September 2012

This result marked the Cards’ fourth successive away defeat and their fourth defeat in a row. In a tale reminiscent of so many games last season, and all too familiar this season as well, the Cards conceded an early goal, Joe McNerney being tackled in the fifth minute as he tried to clear the ball, which was then worked to Ashley Sammons, who fired it past Aaron Howe. Things got even worse just before half-time when Mike Cestor dithered in his own area, with Sam Clucas netting to make it 2-0 at the break.

Also familiar was the story of a fight-back in the second half from Garry Hill’s side but it was too little, too late. Joe McNerney caused confusion in the Hereford area, with Kevin Betsy nodding home at the far post in the 81st minute, but the Cards could not force an equaliser.

Woking: Aaron Howe, Adam Newton, Mike Cestor (Adam Doyle 45), Mark Ricketts (George Frith 80), Joe McNerney, Loick Pires (Dean Sinclair 60), Jack Parkinson, Kevin Betsy, Lee Sawyer, Brett Johnson, Gavin McCallum

Unused subs: Sam Beasant, Bradley Bubb

Woking 1 Hereford United 1
30 March 2013

The Cards came back from a goal down to share the points with a play-off chasing Hereford side and in the process extend their unbeaten run to six games. In a match of few chances, Woking were unlucky to go behind just before the break when Brett Johnson deflected a throw-in past Seb Brown. The Cards hit back immediately after the break, Bradley Bubb’s cross finding Kevin Betsy for a simple tap-in. Late on in the game, Gavin McCallum struck a post.

Woking: Seb Brown, Adam Newton, John Nutter, Joe McNerney, Brett Johnson, Jack Parkinson (Mark Ricketts 80), Billy Knott, Kevin Betsy, Mike Cestor (Lee Sawyer 60), Gavin McCallum, Bradley Bubb (Jayden Stockley 64)

Unused Subs: Elvijs Putnins, George Frith

NEXT GAME

The Cards are away to FC Halifax next Saturday (7 December) in a game brought forward from 8 February. Their next home game is a re-arranged fixture against Kidderminster Harriers on Tuesday 10 December. They are then due to play Chester at home the following Saturday (14 December) but this will be postponed if either Woking or Chester reach the 2nd Round of the FA Trophy.

The Youth side would welcome your support too against Crawley Town in the 2nd Round Proper of the FA Youth Cup on Wednesday 4 December after their excellent win at Cambridge United in the last round.

Come on, you Cards!

P.S. Don’t forget the fans’ Christmas Party on Friday 6 December! Tickets are free and include a raffle ticket. See the news item on 20 November for more details.

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