Alex Pike admits he has been caught up by FA Cup fever as he prepares to make history with Gosport Borough.
The Borough boss led the club to Wembley last season in the FA Trophy final but has achieved another of his outstanding ambitions by reaching the first round proper for the first time in the club’s history.
As a result, Privett Park will host arguably the biggest game in its history on Sunday as Borough host League One side Colchester United (2pm).
And Pike is relishing the chance to see his club in such a high-profile clash.
He said: ‘There’s something about this competition.
‘It grabs people and I include myself in that.
‘I’ve never played against league opposition and I was a bit worried about the draw that we would get another non-league club. That would have been a big anti-climax.
‘But we have the romantic draw against a very good league club and we can’t wait.
‘I’m always proud to be the manager but even more so on an occasion like this.’
While Pike knows Borough are underdogs, he believes his men can record an upset.
He said: ‘If they have an off day and we play to our potential, I’m convinced we can cause an upset. That’s what we are aiming for.
‘Nobody is expecting us to win this game so it’s a free hit for us but the confidence is flying through my camp at the moment.’
Tickets are priced at £19 for adults, £14 for over-60s and £8 for under-18s and are on general sale from the clubhouse at Privett Park or from ELJ Furnishings on Gosport’s High Street.
It’s a huge weekend for the region as Pompey also host Aldershot on Sunday (2pm), while Hawks entertain Preston North End on Monday (8pm).