Paulsgrove bid to give departing boss Ian Heather the perfect send-off by winning the Puma Engineering Hampshire League Cup this afternoon (3pm).
The Portsmouth club take on Hampshire League champions Liphook United at Petersfield’s Love Lane for what will be Heather’s final match in charge before he retires.
Paulsgrove secretary Jim Garcia’s search for a new manager to take over at Marsden Road has been solved from within, with former Gosport Borough defender Darren Robson – currently the first-team coach at the club – agreeing to take over the position next season.
But for today’s final, Heather and Robson will continue their combined efforts that have been the driving force behind a Paulsgrove squad who battled through ties against Overton, Bishop’s Waltham and Hedge End Rangers to earn a place in the final.
And with a large following of fans behind them, Paulsgrove head to Love Lane looking to end the season with some silverware to boast in the trophy cabinet.
Their task will not be easy, though, against a Liphook side bidding to complete a league and cup double this campaign.
‘Everyone in Paulsgrove is looking forward to what promises to be a very hard-fought cup final this afternoon against a side we have a lot of respect for,’ said Garcia.
‘We are one of a few sides who have beaten them in the league this season and I see no reason, with a fully-fit squad, why we can’t do it again.
‘But we shall have to wait and see.
‘What is very pleasing is that we can already celebrate having Darren Robson on board for next season which has given everyone a massive boost going into today’s cup final.
‘I know the lads are delighted that Robbo is staying.
‘And it would be something if they could go out and do the business for him and Ian and give the club a rare trophy win.’
– DAVE KEMP