Farrell has revenge on his mind as Diamonds head back to Witton

Ben Farrell, pictured during the 2-0 defeat to Rushall Olympic, is hoping AFC Rushden & Diamonds can gain some revenge on Witton Albion this weekend. Picture by Alison Bagley
Ben Farrell, pictured during the 2-0 defeat to Rushall Olympic, is hoping AFC Rushden & Diamonds can gain some revenge on Witton Albion this weekend. Picture by Alison Bagley

Ben Farrell is hoping AFC Rushden & Diamonds can gain some revenge on Witton Albion in the second qualifying round of the Buildbase FA Trophy this weekend.

Diamonds head back to Cheshire for the first time since they suffered a 1-0 defeat to Witton in the Evo-Stik League Division One South play-off semi-final in April last year.

The loss ended Diamonds’ promotion hopes for that season although they did make the leap up to Step 3 by gaining elevation at the end of the last campaign.

Now settled into life at a higher level, Diamonds are hoping to progress further in non-League football’s premier knockout competition.

And Farrell, who was part of that team beaten by Witton the last time they met, is keen to ensure the outcome is different this time.

The midfielder said: “We owe Witton one for a couple of years ago. Personally and as a team, we will be up for that one.

“Aside from the journey, it is an exciting tie. I was quite glad when the draw was made.

“It would be nice to get a bit of revenge on them.”

Diamonds had their unbeaten home record this season ended in a 2-0 loss to Rushall Olympic at Hayden Road last weekend, a defeat that also brought to a halt a run of six games without defeat in the Evo-Stik League South Premier Division Central.

It proved to be one of those days for Andy Peaks’ team who promptly bounced back with a 1-0 win over ON Chenecks on Tuesday night as Ben Diamond’s goal 12 minutes from full-time booked them a place in the semi-finals of the NFA Hillier Senior Cup.

That was the first step in recovering from last Saturday’s setback after an encouraging start to life in the division following their promotion.

And Farrell added: “We huffed and puffed but the writing was on the wall when the second goal went in. It didn’t click in the final third for us last weekend

“They were really good defensively, they blocked for their lives and we really found it hard to break them down.

“We carried on that form at home from last season but it wasn’t to be for us.

“Overall though, I think our football has been really good and even the games we have lost, we have been right in them.

“I think the table lies a little bit because we have played well and not got the points we have deserved in some matches.

“But we went on a nice little run up until last Saturday but now we have to make sure we bounce back in the right way.”