Cougars and St George’s coaches expecting tight FA Cup match
Devonshire Cougars and St George’s Colts will square off in an exciting FA Cup quarter- final match-up at Devonshire Recreation Club on Friday night (8pm).
With both sides still firmly in the Premier Division title, there is expected to be very little separating the sides with the only other meeting between them the teams this season ending in a 2-1 win for Cougars in October.
Cougars coach Kwame Steede and St George’s counterpart Jarreau Hayward expect this cup tie to be just as evenly fought in what will be the first of back-to-back meetings between the two sides who will also face off in the league eight days later at Wellington Oval.
“I don’t see the game being any other way,” Steede said. “We are playing the league leaders and they are not leading the table for no reason. We are just trying to keep pace and do what we have to do, game by game. It’s a massive task and we are looking forward to the game.”
Hayward is also preparing for a game of tight margins against formidable opponents.
“We are really looking forward to the game,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity for us to arrive at a semi-final and to test ourselves against an awesome team, an awesome coach, a great organisation and establishment in Devonshire Recreation Club, so we are looking forward to it.
“Progress is our main goal from the beginning of the season and even further back then that. So to be in a quarter final versus Cougars is a sign of all the hard work we have been putting in. Hopefully we can progress and leave the field proud of ourselves and have our fans proud of us as well.”
Both teams are going into the game after victories against struggling Somerset Trojans and Robin Hood in their previous league outings and Cougars could be further bolstered by the return of experienced forward Lejuan Simmons after a hamstring injury.
“He trained, but I can’t say if he is going to be in the team or not,” Steede said, with the former Cougars and Dandy Town player insisting playing at home offers no advantage.
“We have already proved home is no advantage in a sense when it comes to cups and we lost to Somerset in the Dudley Eve Trophy final,” he said.
“I don’t think it’s a big thing. We have a good record away and a good record at home, so it doesn’t matter. St George’s win on the road, they have proven that, so we just want to play the game.”
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