Boss Whing thrilled with Banbury's response after FA Cup exit

It's been quite a week for Banbury United as they played in front of a live televised audience and then maintained their superb league form in midweek

Thursday, 11th November 2021, 8:31 am
Updated Thursday, 11th November 2021, 8:34 am
Action from Banbury United's 4-0 defeat to Sky Bet League Two side Barrow in the first round proper of the FA Cup, which was played in front of a sell-out crowd and live televised audience last weekend. Pictures by Julie Hawkins

Andy Whing was delighted with an “absolutely outstanding” performance as Banbury United bounced back from their Emirates FA Cup exit in midweek.

The Puritans were beaten 4-0 by Sky Bet League Two side Barrow in front of a sell-out crowd and a live television audience in their first round proper clash last Saturday with the defeat ending a record-breaking unbeaten start to the season at 19 games.

Manager Whing had to pick his players up straight away as they took on Rushall Olympic on Tuesday night and they responded with Chris Wreh’s 10th-minute strike being enough to secure a 1-0 win and ensure they remain unbeaten in the Southern League Premier Central this season.

Sign up to our daily Banbury Guardian Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Former Arsenal and England striker Ian Wright was one of the television pundits on hand to watch Banbury's big day in the FA Cup

The victory also moved Banbury to within a point of leaders Peterborough Sports with a game in hand.

“Everyone would have looked at the game on Tuesday after seeing the unbeaten run come to an end on Saturday and it being such a big occasion for the club and may have been worried about what might happen,” Whing said.

“But I thought we were absolutely outstanding. We said we needed a good start to get Saturday out of our systems.

“Rushall were one of the form teams in the league but we were outstanding, especially with the way we started.

“We handled their threat well and we had more great chances and we had a couple cleared off the line but all-in-all it was a fantastic reaction and I can’t praise the players enough.”

Reflecting on another incredible FA Cup run and a famous day against Barrow, Whing added: “For me, it’s still a football match we have lost and I haven’t been able to watch it back yet!

“To get to that stage of the competition isn’t an easy thing to do and we had some really tough games to get there.

“So to get there two years on the trot is unbelievable really and everyone should be really proud of that.

“There was no chance of us winning the FA Cup so the question now is, can we get promoted? “Can we get as close to the top of the league as possible? It’s been a fantastic start and the reaction on Tuesday was great.

“It’s only going to get tougher and the lads were dead on their feet after the game on Tuesday. I think they were as mentally drained as anything.”

With that in mind, Whing knows some changes to his starting line-up will have to happen over the next week.

Banbury head to Southern League Premier South leaders Farnborough in the first round of the Buildbase FA Trophy on Saturday before travelling to sixth-placed Tamworth for a crucial league game next Tuesday night.

“You could see in the last 10 to 15 minutes on Tuesday that the lads were tired,” Whing added.

“It’s been pretty relentless all season. We have only played 12 games in the league but we have played 21 games overall and it’s only the middle of November.

“We have some really tough games coming up so there will have to be a bit of room for manoeuvre when it comes to resting players.

“That doesn’t mean we are picking one competition over another. We want to win all our games.

“But we have to protect the players as much as we can. We have done it well so far and those who have come in when we have needed them to have done well. Hopefully that continues going forward.”