Lee Bradbury insists he is under no added pressure ahead of the Hawks’ FA Cup tie at Larkhall Athletic tomorrow (3pm).
The Westleigh Park outfit have made a disappointing start to their Vanarama National League South campaign – winning just three of their opening 11 games.
Every game is a pressure game because I want to win them allLee Bradbury
An early exit from the FA Cup would only add to the disappointment.
Bradbury, however, has shrugged off suggestions his position could be under review if that happens.
‘I am under no extra pressure for this game,’ said the boss.
‘Every game is a pressure game because I want to win them all.
‘It is only the pressure I put on myself.
‘The chairman has been understanding and knows we have had three or four senior players out injured.
‘He has been in the game long enough and understands it.
‘Our relationship is good and he knows we would have been a lot more competitive if everyone had been fit.’
Larkhall, who play in division one south & west of the Southern League, will present a tricky test.
They held Gosport Borough to a 3-3 draw last season – before losing the replay heavily at Privett Park.
They will know their best chance of going through is at the first attempt and are likely to throw everything at the Hawks from the start. In front of a partisan and vociferous home crowd, Bradbury’s men will have to make sure they have the right mindset.
The Hawks boss knows it is likely to turn into a bit of a scrap and his players have to be ready for that.
‘We are going to need to be brave and fancy it on the day,’ he said.
‘They are a big strong, organised hard-working team.
‘Their confidence is high, being unbeaten since the first game of the season. They are two leagues below us but will be looking at this as their cup final.
‘I am sure they will start with a high tempo and are quite a direct team.
‘It will be an afternoon for rolling our sleeves up and doing that side of the game well.
‘Once the game stretches out, hopefully we can make our quality count.
‘It won’t be a game for the faint hearted, though.
‘And we have to make sure we match their work-rate and desire. That is the most important ingredient for this tie.
‘We don’t want to give them any encouragement from the start and the most important thing is we don’t go there and lose.
‘We either want to win or at least bring them back for a replay.’
The Hawks are without Pompey loanee Rommy Boco – because his parent club do not want him to be cup-tied.
Rowan Vine may not want to be cup-tied, either, as he is still looking to join a professional club.
HAWKS: Young, Blanchett, Strugnell, Monthe, Cummings, Medway, Stock, Donnelly, Swallow, Paterson, Hayter, Azeez, Morgan, Mullings, Clifton, Thomson, Searle