Stiles desperate to end Fareham Town’s 28-year trophy drought by winning 2019/20 Portsmouth Senior Cup
Pete Stiles is determined to end Fareham Town's trophy drought by winning the Portsmouth Senior Cup.
The Reds are bidding to move a step closer to some long-awaited silverware when they travel to Moneyfields on Saturday to finally play their delayed 2019/20 semi-final.
Fareham's last trophy came in 1993 when they were crowned Hampshire Senior Cup champions.
Back then the club, then in the Southern League, trounced Farnborough 4-1 at Southampton’s The Dell to win the cup for the fourth time.
But Stiles says it's about time they put an end to that 28-year wait for glory and booked a final against Baffins Milton Rovers.
He said: 'It’s all a bit strange (delayed cup semi-final) but Fareham haven’t won anything for years so it would be great if we can get to the final.
‘It would be nice to win a trophy. Fareham for years have just struggled at the bottom and we’ve had two seasons now - alright both seasons have been cut short - but we’ve been in decent positions when the season was stopped.
‘We just want to try to get through a season, win something, and more than anything have a full season and see where we are.
‘We’re in a position now where we’re in a semi-final, albeit a tough game, but you’re one game away from a final at Fratton Park and surely everyone wants to play in that.
‘A game away from Fratton Park - everyone should want to play there.’
PSC holders Moneyfields have seen several changes since they last played in the competition, beating Hampshire Premier Leaguers Denmead 4-0 in the quarter-final at Front Lawn last September.
Former manager Dave Carter has now moved to AFC Portchester while newly-appointed boss Glenn Turnbull is not taking charge until late May with US Portsmouth still in the FA Vase and Wessex League Cup.
That means Louis Bell and Louis Savage - former joint-managers at Cams Alders - will be overseeing matters when Fareham visit.
But despite their changes, Stiles is still expecting a tough test against a Moneys side operating a division higher than them at Southern League Division 1 South level.
He said: 'We’ll be looking to progress. It’ll be tough against Moneyfields because they’re the holders and are going to want to retain it.
‘We’ve got to go to their place, they’re a division above us so they’ll be expecting to go through, but we’ve got to go and try to cause a bit of an upset.'
One of the first games Stiles took charge of after being appointed Fareham boss in January 2017 was at Dover Road.
In an eventful Wessex Premier encounter, Fareham twice came from behind to earn a 2-2 draw against a Moneys side who had two men sent off.
Simon Woods and Josh Holmes netted for the Reds, with Dan Wooden and Curt De Costa on target for the hosts.