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Preview: Folkestone Invicta (A)

After last week’s league defeat at Gateshead, City are in FA Cup action tomorrow as we travel down to the other end of the country to face Folkestone Invicta, 3pm kick off.

A supporter’s coach is running and there’s still spaces available, book online:

City’s last victory in the Third Qualifying Round came in 2018 when we took Dorking Wanderers to a replay. A win tomorrow would be the seventh time we have reached the Fourth Qualifying Round in the past ten attempts.

Lee Mansell takes charge of City for the first time, and has made two midfield loan signings who go straight into the squad: Leon Chambers-Parillon from Oxford United and Lucas Tomlinson from Bristol Rovers.

“Leon is someone who Daf and I have crossed paths with a few times through Rovers Academy and he had a very good loan spell at Biggleswade. He’s an attacking midfielder with a very good engine and comfortable on the ball, and he offers something different to what we already have. He’s not the finished article, but Daf and I are really looking forward to working with him. Lucas is a player who I’ve worked with day in day out for the past four years. I immediately identified him as being one the first signings I’d make, he can play in a number of positions and he’s a sharp player who is looking to kick on now at Rovers, so he’s here to do the business. He’s talented and professional and he’ll integrate well with the rest of the squad. Both players will enhance and improve what we have.“ Lee Mansell

Team News

Fabien Robert returns from suspension, and Tommy O’Sullivan is back in the squad after coming through a training session.

The Visitors

Folkestone currently sit third in the Isthmian Premier with 15 points from 7 games. To reach this round of the Cup they recorded away wins at Corinthian and Ashford Town, and they last made the Fourth Qualifying Round in 2017.

Manager Neil Cugley is in his 23rd season of managing the club and is the longest serving manager in the top seven tiers of English football. He told their club website:

“I’m really looking forward to the game, although we’ll have to be at our best to get a result, despite the fact they are not having the best of times at the moment and have just replaced their Manager, they are full-time and a step above us, and don’t forget when last season finished early they were top of their League. “If we play like we did in the first half last Saturday, we’ll have a decent chance, but if we make the mistakes we did in the second then we won’t, it’s as simple as that, the higher you go up the Leagues the better the finishing is, so we can’t let them have as many chances as we did Potters Bar.”

Discussing the squad, he said: The issue with the fuel supply is currently a double-edged sword, whilst Tuesday’s game being called off allowed the players to have a full week off and recover from any knocks and strains picked up, we haven’t been able to have a training session this week, which we obviously would have liked. “However, we mustn’t use that as an excuse, I’m expecting everyone to be available, except Kieron [McCann] of course who is still a few weeks away after his op, and raring to go.”

Last Time Out

Although technically this is the first meeting between the teams, in 1989 City did play the previous inhabitants of Cheriton Road, Folkestone FC, in the Fourth Qualifying Round winning 1-0 and going on the make the Second Round Proper.

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