Don’t underestimate value of the Trophy, says Tommy

Tommy Wright
Tommy Wright

There are those within the non-League game who now see the FA Trophy as more of a hinderance than an opportunity these days.

But Corby Town manager Tommy Wright isn’t one of them.

Wright was part of the Darlington team who won the competition at Wembley four years ago when Chris Senior’s dramatic goal in the last minute of extra-time sealed a 1-0 win over Mansfield Town.

Wright is now preparing his Corby Town team for Saturday’s third qualifying round tie with Vanarama National League North rivals Tamworth.

The Steelmen boss believes North Ferriby United’s success in the Trophy last season shows it is a competition worth taking seriously.

And, after a real struggle in the league so far with Corby battling at the wrong end of the table, Wright knows a good run in a cup competition could be the perfect tonic.

“At Darlington we probably had around 1,800 watching us on a regular basis and then we took 17,000 to Wembley for the final so the FA Trophy clearly means a lot to people,” the Corby manager said.

“When we won it, it meant a great deal more than anyone can imagine.

“I think it’s a fantastic competition and I can assure you I will be hammering that into our players before Saturday.

“North Ferriby showed last season that you don’t have 
to be in National League to win it.

“We have not had a great league season so far and maybe we could get ourselves on a good cup run to help keep things exciting for the fans.

“But talk is cheap, we have to go and do it.

“It is going to take a lot of hard work and sometimes you need that bit of luck when it comes to knockout football.

“I am feeling confident about the game, like I am every week.

“We were in the game for 45 minutes against Harrogate last weekend but then the lads looked dead on their feet after an hour.

“We could use excuses about the game we had at Stalybridge and it being on a heavy pitch but the truth is, in the end, we weren’t good enough.”

Saturday’s clash sees Wright come up against another of his former clubs and Tamworth arrive at Steel Park having climbed to seventh place in the National League North.

But the boss insists there will be no room for sentiment and he has called on the Corby supporters to up the noise levels for the match.

“Anyone can beat anyone in our division and that has been proven time and time again,” he added.

“I had a good year at Tamworth and it will be nice to see a few familiar faces.

“But Corby Town is where my focus is and I want this club to be winning games of football. Saturday is our next opportunity to do that.

“I really hope the fans come out and get behind us.

“I didn’t think the atmosphere was that great against Harrogate last weekend and it’s disappointing when 70 away supporters out-sing our fans on our own ground.

“We need the supporters with us.

“Not just from a financial point of view but because when they are vocal, it 
really helps drive the players on.”