Moneyfields go in search of Hampshire Senior Cup shock
Dave Carter is confident the weather won't scupper his return for a second time as Moneyfields host National League Aldershot Town in the Hampshire Senior Cup at Dover Road tonight (7.45pm).
The game against Slimbridge at the weekend was called off by the match referee who deemed the pitch unplayable.
Carter resigned as manager at the end of September but, after taking a break, agreed to take up the reins again.
He is hoping his team can celebrate his reappearance with a big cup upset.
'Despite all the recent rain, the pitch looks fine,' he reported.
'Aldershot are sending a mixed squad of first team and academy players.
'Whatever side they put out it will be a big challenge for us.
'They play three levels above us and will start as firm favourites.
'If we are to beat them then we will have to be right on our game.
'We will be putting out the strongest team available.
'We want to be successful and progress as far as we can in all competitions.'
The home side’s chances are boosted by the availability of experienced striker Steve Hutchings.
Though Hutchings is suspended from league games after being sent off at Bristol Manor Farm, that doesn't rule him out of the county cup game.
Another big positive is the return to full fitness of fellow striker Ryan Pennery after heel and ankle problems.
'With Hutch and Pennery in the side hopefully we can give the Aldershot defence a bit to think about,' said Carter.
His main priority, however, remains trying to guide the club into the Southern League Division One South play-offs.
To help in that aim, a couple of new signings could be imminent.
'We can put a strong eleven or twelve players out but, beyond that, we need more strength in depth.
'If we get a couple of injuries or suspensions then we struggle a bit.'
Defender Curtis da Costa is on the way back, though, after being plagued by shoulder problems last season.
He had surgery during the summer but is expected to return to full training this week.
'Once we get Curtis back it will be like having a new player,' said Carter.
'He was with Swindon Town as a professional and for a young lad he’s very dominant in the air.'
Moneyfields bounced back from their first defeat of the season to progress in the Southern Women’s League Cup.
After the agony of exiting the FA Women’s Cup on penalties at Portishead, Moneys trounced Southampton Women Reserves 5-1 in a second round tie at Lapstone Park, Eastleigh.
Sophie Kingsley-Cabell, Kim Whitcombe and Krystal White were joined on the scoresheet by subs Brittany Jeal and Paige Seeley.
Seeley had also jumped off the bench to score twice in a 6-2 League Cup first round win at Woodley.
Moneys host Abingdon this coming Sunday (2pm) in only their fourth Southern Region Premier Division game of the season.
Promoted in each of the last two campaigns, Karl Watson’s side have won their first three matches.