King's Lynn Town prepare for FA Cup First Round test at League Two Port Vale
Ian Culverhouse will tell his King’s Lynn Town players to treat tomorrow’s huge FA Cup first round tie at Port Vale as “just another game” as the club pit their wits against a Football League side.
The Linnets chief is excited at the prospect at taking on the League Two high-flyers and knows it is a chance for his squad to enjoy their chance in the spotlight.
It is the first time since 2006/07 that Lynn have been involved at this stage of the competition and Culverhouse said: “We are treating it as just another game really against a really good side.
“The day is about going to a Football League club, a lovely stadium and trying to compete with them.
“We’ve had a couple of reports on them. They had a good win at the weekend and seem to be hitting form at just the right time.”
The Lynn boss has never coached or managed a team at Port Vale but came up against the Valiants as a player with Brighton. And he believes it is a chance for his players to shine on a big stage.
“It’s a big old pitch and a big stadium, it has got to get your juices flowing as a player,” he admitted.
“I know when we went to Telford in the league last season, the players looked at the surroundings and the stadium and thought ‘we’ll have some of this’ and delivered a massive performance on the pitch.
“We are now playing at stadiums that we would never have dreamed of two years ago and it shows how far this football club has come in such a short space of a time.
“The first 15 minutes is going to be massive for us, it’ll be about trying to stay in the game.
“After that we will try to play our game. I can’t see us going there, sitting in behind and trying to hit them on the break, we will approach it the same as we would any other game.
“I will tell the players to enjoy occasion and not to play with any fear. When we get the ball down and try to play we’re a different team.”
While it was Jamar Loza who grabbed the headlines for his late two-goal burst in the win against Woking last Saturday, it was youngster Sonny Carey who played a big part in the 3-2 victory at The Walks.
And, according to Culverhouse, the 19-year-old has a bright future ahead of him on the eve of probably the biggest game in the teenager’s short career.
“Sonny has been the catalyst for our performances at the moment, he’s driving us on,” admitted Culverhouse.
“The last two second halves he has played, he has been exceptional for us.
“He has had to be patient for his chance in the side and he gets a little bit depressed when he hasn’t started, but he’s earning his corn at the minute.
“If you’ve got young and hungry players in your squad they will drive the football club on and Sonny’s a fine example.
“I’ve always said that Sonny is a very talented kid, it’s just about getting the consistency level in his performances.
“Once he does that, he can do anything the kid.”
This season, losing teams will receive a share of prize money in the FA Cup first round to lessen the financial impact of ties being played behind closed doors.
Losing teams previously got no prize money but will get £5,657 - while the winners will receive £16,972.