Make some memories! Craig Elliott challenges Boston United to put together FA Cup run

East Thurrock set to visit Jakemans Community Stadium...
Craig Elliott. Photo: Oliver AtkinCraig Elliott. Photo: Oliver Atkin
Craig Elliott. Photo: Oliver Atkin

Craig Elliott is challenging his Boston United squad to put last season’s frustrations behind them and make some memories as the Pilgrims return to FA Cup action.

Isthmian Premier outfit East Thurrock United will visit the Jakemans Community Stadium on Saturday (KO 3pm) for a third qualifying round tie.

Boston are unbeaten in the competition since their narrow 2-1 exit to Rochdale, then of League One, in the second round back in December 2019.

However, positive Covid-19 cases in the camp forced the Pilgrims to forfeit their home tie against Hemel Hempstead Town last season.

Elliott - who also guided Shaw Lane to a first round tie against League Two Mansfield Town in 2017 - is a firm believer that good cup runs can reinvigorate a side.

And he would love another brilliant campaign of knockout football.

“It does sting (having to withdraw last season,” Elliott said.

“We won our first game (4-2 against AFC Mansfield) and were looking forward to paying a team we hadn’t played.

“Last time we lost was Rochdale, so let’s keep that run going as long as we can.

“They’re one off matches that promotion and play-off campaigns can’t bring. They put players into the spotlight, they can become heroes in each round.

“I love the competition as the dynamics change as you go through it. You start as favourites and later become underdogs and you have to manage that as well.”

Boston - who thrashed Northern Premier League Midlands Corby Town 6-0 in the previous round - will certainly be the favourites on Saturday as they sit one level above their Essex-based visitors.

“It’s exciting. It’s nice to play teams you don’t know and do your research and look into that,” Elliott added.

“Being at home makes it a nice week to look forward to. The FA Cup is about players’ careers and having big, high moments.”

United are hopeful winger Joe Leesley and defender Matt Tootle could be available for selection following long term injury


MORE PILGRIMS: United extend Leake loan - news

MORE PILGRIMS: Big win in FA Youth Cup - news

MORE PILGRIMS: Fans gallery - photos

MORE PILGRIMS: United 2 Guiseley 1 - photos