Edinburgh confident his side will keep eyes on prize
9:01am Tuesday 27th August 2013 in Newport County
MANAGER Justin Edinburgh believes his side could cause a surprise at Premier League West Brom tonight, but is wary of the effect the cup might on the Exiles’ league form, writes Michael Pearlman.
Edinburgh returns to a top tier ground for the first time since his playing career with Tottenham ended in 2001, ready to pit his wits against Albion’s Steve Clarke at the Hawthorns.
It’s a far cry from the non-league abyss from which both Newport County AFC and Edinburgh (as a manager) came, but Edinburgh is adamant he’s targeting victory and has no interest in ‘a nice day out.’
“There is no pressure on us, as a club on the whole what this is, it’s an occasion, a ‘look how far we’ve come pat on the back’ sort of day for the fans and the board, but for us, we go there looking for more than that,” he said.
“If you go back to the FA Trophy it was a bit like that, we were going for a day out and the result didn’t matter, but that’s not the case for us, we want to give back to the fans, but not just with a day out, with a good performance as well.
“We won’t see anyone do a Bradford for a long, long time, but there will be upsets tonight, one, two, maybe more and let’s see if we can be one of them. It’s a massive task and a tall order but there will be an upset and that’ll be the challenge I set to my players.”
However, Edinburgh is worried about all eyes remaining on the priority, which is Newport’s league form.
“You saw last season with us being knocked out of the cups early, it favoured us a bit, both Grimsby and Wrexham got caught up in their cup runs and faded towards the end of the season,” he said.
“But we know what is more important. Tonight is a bonus and the biggest game this week is Scunthorpe away, but we have a focused group and the squad is so competitive, if anyone drops off they’ll be out the team and they know that.”
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