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It’s win or go home, says cool Brown

Dennis Brown, the Devonshire Cougars coach, admits his side need to be at their best in their FA Cup semi- final showdown with North Village at Wellington Oval.

The defending champions have nothing to play for apart from the last piece of silverware for the season, having surrendered their league title three weeks ago with defeat on the same ground against Hamilton Parish.

Solely focusing on what can potentially be an historic repeat in this competition, Brown is calling on his troops to stand up and be accounted for.

“It is very simple, if we fail to show up, and I mean that by us not playing at full speed and following the game plan, then it will be a long afternoon for us,” Brown said.

“If we follow the plan that is set out, then something else can happen in a more positive light in terms of the result.”

Cougars will need to stop a team who are in full flow at the moment. Village are on an eight-match unbeaten run and in contention for a league and cup double, along with fellow challengers Dandy Town.

In their previous encounters this season, Cougars have had the better of the exchanges, winning 2-0 at Bernard Park to go with a 1-1 draw at home.

Both sides have had an extra week to prepare for the match, with the First Division taking centre stage last weekend, which Brown believes will be a factor in the match. “The extra week has enabled us to focus on what is before us, and that is a huge match with lots at stake against a good team,” he said.

The coach noted that the pressure of the occasion should not get to his side after the experience of winning the triple crown last season.

“It is no pressure,” he said. “It is as simple as win or go home. They had more pressure last year when they were going for the triple.”

On the opposing side is Ralph Bean Jr, who, in his second full season at the helm as Village coach, is seeking his first piece of silverware.

Although the task of being competitive in the dying stages of two competitions is a tough task for any side, Bean expects his side to put their best foot forward come kick-off.

“Our objective is to do as well as we can in the remaining matches,” Bean said. “We won't approach this game any different from the previous games we have played this year. As long as we go out and show what we are capable of, and play with heart and dedication to the ultimate goal, I will be happy.”

Village and Cougars play in the second of a double-header at 4pm with Town and unfancied Robin Hood, the First Division champions, meeting in the opener at 2pm.

Dennis Brown and Cougars have only one of their three titles from last season to play for (Photo by Mark Tatem)

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Published March 22, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated March 22, 2014 at 1:54 am)

It’s win or go home, says cool Brown

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