Seaside trip is the reward if Saints can finish the job off

Brackley Town officials will be hoping to light up Blackpool in the next round of the Emirates FA Cup.

Thursday, 10th November 2016, 2:06 pm
Gillingham's Max Ehmer challenges with Brackley Town's Lee Ndlovu. Photo: Matthew Panting

Saints have been handed a trip to the seaside in the second round – if they can beat Gillingham in next Wednesday’s replay.

And the BT Sport cameras will be at St James Park again to see if there is a repeat of 2013 when Glenn Walker’s solitary goal knocked Gillingham out of the competition.

Blackpool, who won the FA Cup in 1953, have fallen on hard times since their brief stay in the Premier League. Now in Sky Bet League Two, the Tangerines have struggled to find their form and Saints will sense another upset if they get through.

Saturday’s cup tie rounded off a good run for Wilkin, who was named October’s Vanarama National League North manager of the month.

And his side’s display at Gillingham was another highlight for Wilkin.

He said: “The FA Cup has been very kind to me in recent years.

“I had a couple of decent first rounds ties with Nuneaton, at Wrexham we came close to knocking Stoke City out and with Brackley, we’ve taken Newport County to a replay and now Gillingham.

“It’s right up there with some of my managerial highlights, their fans applauded us off at the end which was nice to see. If we can play as well in the replay, we’ll give it a good go.

“There is a lot of belief and heart in that dressing room.”

As for drawing Blackpool if they get through, Wilkin added: “I’d have rather had a non-league club at home with the chance of getting to the third round! But at least it’s another famous Football League club.”

But Wilkin wants to put the replay on the back burner until after Saturday’s trip to Boston.

He said: “The players have been fantastic so far and they know the importance of Saturday’s game.

“It’s important we come away from Boston with a result before they start thinking about the replay.”