“It’s the FA Vase – anything can happen” – Walsall Wood to face Anstey Nomads in FA Vase

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Walsall Wood manager Harry Harris has warned his side against complacency ahead of the third-round FA Vase tie stressing: “We haven’t done anything yet.”

Walsall Wood in action against Shifnal Town. (Credit: Harry Harris)

The Wood won 2-0 against Deeping Rangers in the previous round.

It is the first time the club has reached the third round of the tournament in five years.

The team, based at Oak Park, secured a club-record semi-final finish last campaign, losing 2-1 to eventual winners Warrington Rylands.

While the club hope to go one step further this time out, Harris is focused on the game at hand.

He said: “It’s a massive thing for the club so to get through was nice but we haven’t done anything yet. Get through to the next round and through to the nationals and we can get anyone across the country so that’s the challenge really.

“I don’t want us having Wembley talked about round the ground just yet because we’re so far away really – I think it’s five or six games so we can’t start talking about it yet. It’s got to be one game at a time at the minute.”

Harris was appointed Wood manager in October, with the encounter against an in-form Anstey Nomads a tough test early on in his tenure.

The Leicestershire-based club are currently third in the Uhlsport United Counties League, winning five out of their eight away league matches.

But the former Walsall Wood player believes his team will come out on top.

Harris said: “They’re third in their league and by all accounts they’re doing well and winning games but it’s a cup game at the end of the day, it’s not a league game. It’s the FA Vase – anything can happen.

“This year after the COVID seasons we’ve had, there’s no extra-time, there’s no replays. We’re at home and that’s where the tie will finish so if we can get the upper-hand early I think we will be OK. If not, we will see the game out and go to penalties. It’s the luck of the draw really.”

The Midland League Premier Division team built on their FA Vase win with a 5-1 victory against Brocton in the Walsall Senior Cup.

Harris is hopeful that building confidence within the squad will help with their league form, with the side currently in 13th position.

The manager added: “We beat Brocton 5-1 and you could see after in the changing room the lads were buzzing. Winning games breeds confidence so whatever game, whether I organise a friendly for a Tuesday night or anything like that, we want to go and win it.

“The last two games we’ve looked like we’re confident on the ball and we look like we’ve got that belief. If we keep that up and our standards and our mentality have been spot on as well so far so if we keep hold of those attributes, there’s no reason why we can’t go and win the game.”

Walsall Wood return to league action on Saturday as they welcome AFC Wulfrunians to Oak Park in search of another three points.

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