Dan Burnell strike makes Slough Town FA Cup history
By Rob Stevens • Published 26 Oct 2012 09:01 0 Comments
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Glory days are back: Slough Town players celebrate after a 2-1 FA Cup fourth qualifying round replay win at Gosport Borough on Tuesday. Picture by Paul Paxford, www.pitchsidephoto.co.uk
STEVE Bateman branded Slough Town's return to the FA Cup limelight a wonderful occasion.
Dan Burnell's late goal sealed Rebels' return to the glory days of the 1990s.
And Steve Easterbrook has called for the entire town to make the trip to Mansfield on Saturday, November 3.
Rebels supremo Bateman beamed: "It was a performance full of guts, determination and the work ethic that comes with that.
"I'm delighted, it ticks another box that has been nagging away at me.
"It was a wonderful occasion, I will savour and enjoy the moment.
"There is a proud history at the club. This achievement is up there considering the level we're playing at, you'd expect Conference teams to be the mainstay at this stage.
"We're one of the joint lowest clubs still in the competition and that's testament to the strength we've got."
"It adds valuable revenue with the potential of more to come and the story is not over yet."
Slough chairman Easterbrook beamed: "It brings back some of the glory days of the 90s.
"The profile of the club has been increased and the publicity it brings will be warmly received.
"It's quite an achievement to have reached the first round proper of the FA Cup."
He continued: "Our previous three games have been against higher league opposition but the support of the fans has definitely helped us get through.
"The supporters on Tuesday were outnumbered but you would not have thought so by the noise they generated.
"We only had around 80 but you'd have thought we had a lot more, the players and management are very appreciative.
"I hope it has a knock on effect and we pick up a few more."
The Rebels had to come from behind at Privett Park but Bateman insists his team deserved to win the fourth qualifying round replay.
He said: "We did everything to warrant the victory, the players worked their socks off.
"The 4-0 FA Trophy defeat had eaten away at me a little but I said to Alex Pike [Gosport manager] after the game now you've seen we are a good side, and he agreed.
"It's not lucky over two games, the stronger side prevails.
"All credit to Gosport, though, they were gracious in defeat and realised they had been beaten by a better side."
The Rebels' reward is a money-spinning trip to Mansfield Town of the Blue Square Bet Premier and Bateman is already looking forward to the challenge.
The Slough boss went on: "It's a step into the unknown a little now.
"But we would've done our homework before, be prepared, and have a real good go at it. It's a tough place to go but why does it have to end here?
"Mansfield were a proud Football League club for a long time with aspirations to get back into it so all the pressure and expectation will be with them.
"It's a great challenge for us to show we can compete with better players."
Easterbrook added: "Mansfield play a number of divisions higher. I assume they are full-time professionals, so it'll be a tall order.
"But it's a day to enjoy as a club, I hope the whole of Slough can enjoy it.
"I hope as many supporters as possible make the journey up for a great day out. The more supporters we can take the more chance we've got of winning."
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