Sporting Bengal boss Gazi optimistic about FA Cup tie

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards)

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards) - Credit: Archant

Sporting Bengal United manager Imrul Gazi is optimistic as they look to pull off an upset in the FA Cup when they face Harlow Town this weekend.

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards)

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards) - Credit: Archant

Bengal will make the trip to the Harlow Arena on Saturday for a preliminary round tie after winning their extra preliminary round clash with Clapton last week.

The winners of the tie will bag £1,444 in prize money while the losers receive £481 for their efforts.

“It’s a team that are one step higher than us,” said Gazi. “They’re obviously going to be favourites, I don’t think anyone will be expecting us to get a result.

“We go there with optimism, again I hope to have a strong team available, and I expect it to be a physical game and similar to the Walthamstow game we played on Saturday.

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards)

Sporting Bengal United in action against Walthamstow (Pic: Tim Edwards) - Credit: Archant


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“It’s on 3G so I’m hoping that will allow us to bring the ball down and play. It’s obviously going to be a tough game, but it’s the FA Cup so it’s anyone’s game, we’re not going to roll over.”

Bengal were due to face St Margaretsbury last night (Wednesday) on the back of a 3-1 defeat to Walthamstow in the Essex Senior League season opener at Mile End on Saturday.

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“It was close actually, it was a good encounter. It was behind closed doors unfortunately,” added Gazi, after seeing Joel Ramos score his side’s goal.

“There were no changing rooms for the players with Tower Hamlets Council on strike. GLL have a lot of their staff on furlough, so unfortunately it was with limited resources, but at least the pitch was in a good state.

“There was nothing much in it first half, it was tight as you’d expect from the first game of the season.

“You know what you’re going to get from Walthamstow, they’re a big side that have a way of playing that suits them.

“They kept going, looked to play off second balls, and used their power, strength and experience ultimately.

“I thought it was a soft penalty that broke the deadlock but I can see why it was given. I think the striker made a mountain out of molehill.

“I was really pleased with the endeavour. We’re still some way away from where we need to be, but it’s going to take time with a lot of new faces coming in over pre-season.”

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