Midfielder Jim Stevenson says The Shots head to Bradford City tonight with nothing to lose.
“We’re really looking forward to the game,” he enthuses, “off the back of a couple of disappointing results we’ve got something to put right and nothing to lose. We’ll go there with plenty of confidence and belief and have a right go.”
Frustrating defeats against Kidderminster Harriers and Lincoln City ended the team’s six-game unbeaten run, but Stevenson is using those losses as personal motivation to bounce back in style.
“Just from the disappointment of our second-half performance on Saturday, I can’t wait to get out there, and I’m sure all the boys are the same. It doesn’t matter who we’d be playing, we’d want to put it right and put in a good performance,” he admits, but clearly knows the potential benefits of a positive response tonight at the Coral Windows Stadium. “If we play the way we’re capable of playing there’s no reason why we can’t get a result as well.
“We’re all confident in our own ability, individually and as a team, and if we turn up as a team we have good individuals and a good spirit. We can match anyone on our day and we showed in the first tie that we were probably the better team. If we can show those same attributes, we have a good chance.”
With the game against last season’s FA Cup quarter-finalists live on BT Sport, as well as in front of Bradford’s large home support, the former Luton Town midfielder knows that The Shots start as underdogs, but hopes that the Bantams feel the pressure of expectation.
“They’re going to expect to beat us and if we start well and stay solid, to limit their opportunities, the crowd will get frustrated. That will play into our hands, so we’ve got to go out there and be positive.
“We hope to make our fans proud, we’ll all put in 100%. Everyone wants to be in the next round,” he says, daring to briefly look ahead to a potential second round tie against Chesham United. “We’ve seen the draw and the opportunity that could lie ahead of us, but we know that it’s just this next game that we’ve got to focus on. All the boys will be excited, so we’ve got to enjoy this opportunity, but it’s an opportunity that we have to take.”