FA Cup: Tom Loizou remaining calm as Haringey Borough bid to make first round proper for first time
PUBLISHED: 10:00 13 October 2017
Borough hope to continue historic run with win at home to divisional rivals Heybridge Swifts on Saturday
Haringey Borough have already made plenty of history on their run to the FA Cup fourth qualifying round, but boss Tom Loizou has no plans of stopping there.
The Coles Park club have gone further than they ever have done in the oldest football tournament in the world and can make the first round proper for the first time by beating Heybridge Swifts at home on Saturday.
The winners of fourth qualifying round ties stand to pocket £12,500, with Haringey having already picked up £16,925 for their cup run.
A place in the first round proper and the chance to be drawn against teams like 2008 winners Portsmouth and 2013 champions Wigan Athletic is also at stake this weekend.
Saturday’s clash with Heybridge could well be the most important fixture in Borough’s history, something that Loizou is only too aware of.
“Everyone keeps reminding me that it’s probably the biggest game in the club’s history!” said Loizou.
“There is pressure on both teams going into the game, but we just have to keep doing what we’ve been doing all season.
“It is different to other games because there is so much riding on it and everyone is looking forward to the game.”
While cup draws can sometimes pit you against unknown opposition, Haringey will know plenty about Heybridge, with both teams in the Bostik North this term.
But Loizou believes meeting a foe that Borough know so well will make it more difficult for his side to progress.
“It makes it harder facing a team from the same division rather than easier,” he added.
“I’d rather we faced a team from another division, or even a team from a higher league because we seem to have kept our best performances for those games.
“The draw has been kind to both us and Heybridge, though, as we have both avoided bigger teams.”
Haringey warmed up for the cup clash with a 3-0 win at home to Whyteleafe in the premilinary round of the FA Trophy.
Borough also had plenty to celebrate off the pitch, with Loizou named Bostik North manager of the month for September.
And the Haringey boss will hope he also has an FA Cup win to toast this weekend.