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Cards hope for Cup away joy

Brian Caffarey - 3rd November 2016

Cards hope for Cup away joy Stockport County v Woking
Emirates FA Cup 1st Round Proper
3pm on Saturday 5 November 2016

The Cards will be hoping that their poor away form in the league will be banished on Saturday when they travel to Stockport County of the Vanarama National League North for an Emirates FA Cup tie which Garry Hill is very keen to win. Make the trip if you can to support the side in what should be a well-attended, intriguing contest.

WOKING

The Cards go into this game on the back of a poor run which has seen them win only one of their last nine games: the 2-1 FA Cup replay victory over Torquay United which saw them through to this tie against the Hatters. In the league they have yet to win a match away from home, managing only two draws in nine outings.

It is frustrating that, apart from the dismal 4-1 away defeat to Sutton United, the Cards have been in decent positions in many of their recent games, having been in the lead against Bromley, Braintree Town and Boreham Wood, only to fold far too easily when placed under concerted pressure.

Matt Tubbs has presumably returned to Forest Green Rovers at the end of his loan spell. We will have to see if any of the Cards’ recent absentees through injury – Ismail Yakubu, Zac Ansah, Jake Caprice and Brian Saah – are fit enough to be involved on Saturday. Left back loanee Ben Jefford had a promising debut at Boreham Wood and it is to be hoped that Forest Green Rovers have given permission for him to play in this Cup tie.

The two sides last met in the 2012-13 season when the Cards did the double over the Hatters, winning 2-1 away, with goals from Gavin McCallum and Loick Pires, and 1-0 at home, with Adam Doyle netting the winner. The Woking side on the latter occasion was: Aaron Howe, Adam Newton, Mike Cestor (John Nutter 43), Joe McNerney, Adam Doyle, Mark Ricketts, Dean Sinclair (Jack Parkinson 87), Billy Knott, Kevin Betsy, Bradley Bubb, Brett Williams (Loick Pires 69). The unused subs were Sam Beasant and Gavin McCallum.

STOCKPORT COUNTY

It is hard to believe that the Hatters, who finished 8th in the old Second Division (now the Championship) as recently as 1997-98, are now in their fourth season in the Conference North. But there are signs that a revival is under way, with the Board just having announced a substantial increase in manager Jim Gannon’s budget in recognition of an improving financial position, aided by their FA Cup run. Gannon returned to County for the third time in January this year, after a successful spell at Northwich Victoria. County’s declared ambition is to return to the Football League by 2020, possibly returning to full-time status on reaching the Conference National.

They currently sit in 12th place in the Vanarama National League North League table with 24 points from 15 games. Before their 1-0 home defeat by Kidderminster Harriers last Saturday, in front of a crowd of over 2,800, they had won their previous four games. At home in the league they have won three, drawn two and lost three. Their Cup run so far is as follows:

2Q Stockport County 2 Hyde United 0
3Q Stockport County 2 Salford City 1
4Q Stockport County 2 Bishop Auckland 0

Their best known player is probably highly experienced 6’ 3’’ striker, former Nigerian international, Jay Odejayi, whose previous clubs include Forest Green Rovers and Cheltenham Town. Leading scorer this season is Danny Lloyd with nine goals, having plundered over 60 goals for AFC Fylde in three seasons. The Hatters have recently brought in on loan 19 year-old striker James Hooper from Rochdale; he will be eligible to play on Saturday. Another player to look out for is Courtney Meppen-Walter, an imposing centre back, who was originally with Manchester City and captained England at U18 level before joining Carlisle United. Midfielder Lewis Montrose was formerly with Wigan Athletic and was part of promotion-winning sides at Wycombe Wanderers and Gillingham.

The winners of Saturday’s tie will receive £18,000 in prize money.

If a replay is required, it is likely to be on Tuesday 15 November.

GETTING THERE

Edgeley Park
Hardcastle Road
Edgeley
Stockport
Cheshire
SK3 9DD

Website: www.stockportcounty.com

By coach

The Cards Trust coaches leave Kingfield at 8.15am. The cost is £25 for Trust members and £30 for non-members, with U16s at £13/£15. To find out if there are any seats left, please email shop@wokingfc.co.uk or a.barn1572@btinternet.com or ring the Club Shop on 01483 772470.

All fans travelling on the Cards Trust coaches will receive free entry to the match, courtesy of Woking FC.

By car

Exit the M6 at Junction 19 (signposted 'Manchester Airport, Stockport A55, M56 East') and at the roundabout turn right onto the A556. At the Bowden roundabout after 4.2 miles, turn right (signposted 'Manchester M56') onto the M56 motorway. Exit the M56 motorway after 6.9 miles (signposted 'Stockport M60, Sheffield M67') onto the M60. Exit the M60 at Junction 1 (sign-posted 'Stockport Town Centre'). At the roundabout, follow signs to 'Cheadle A560' also 'Stockport County FC' into Hollywood Way. Go straight on at the first set of traffic lights and turn right at the next (signposted 'Cheadle A560, Stockport County FC') onto the A560 towards 'Ye Olde Woolpack' pub. After 1.1 miles turn left (no signpost, by the 'Farmers Arms') onto the B5465 Edgeley Road. After approximately 1 mile turn right into Dale Street at the traffic lights and take the second left into Hardcastle Road for the stadium.

Official, secure matchday parking is available at the Booth St car park (off Mercian Way). Secure parking is priced at £4 for cars.

Beware of restrictions if parking in local streets.

By train

There are frequent trains direct from London Euston to Stockport with a journey time of just under two hours. Trains leave at 00, 20 and 40 minutes past the hour e.g. the 12.20 arrives at 14.16. Trains back are at 04, 23 and 43 minutes past the hour, taking just over two hours, e.g. the 17.23 arrives at 19.25.

Stockport Railway Station is about ten minutes’ walk from Edgeley Park. Walk down steps from platform and turn left (opposite direction to booking office). Walk up Station Road, cross the main road at 'The Blue Bell' and continue up the hill towards the roundabout. Take the A5464 (Mercian Way) and turn left into Caroline Street for the stadium.

ADMISSION PRICES

Entry prices have been reduced for this game to encourage a big crowd:

Adults (18-64): £10
Concessions: £7*
6-17 years: £4
Under 6: Free (with full paying adult - Under 6's in County stands require a FREE ticket from the Ticket Office to gain entry.)

* Concessions are Students**, Disabled fans***, and fans aged 65+.

** Students must be in full time education - valid ID must be provided.

*** Disabled fans - proof of disability that may be required from supporters wishing to sit in any of the accessible areas, can be any of the following:
¥ A statement of high mobility/living allowance as issued by the Department of Work & Pensions
¥ Receipt of either the Severe Disablement Allowance or Attendance Allowance
¥ Blind or partially sighted registration certificate
¥ Enhanced Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

NEXT GAME

The Cards are at home to North Ferriby United the following Saturday (12 November). Please note that the kick-off is at 5.30pm because the game is being televised. There is free entry for the U16s and, in recognition of Armistice Day, also for members of the Armed Forces.

Come on, you Cards!
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