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Jimmy Dean aims for a successful week on the pitch at Glanford Park

17 November 2023

Both sides will be looking to bounce back from disappointing results in midweek, when the Iron and the Quakers meet at Glanford Park.

In what will be the second visit of Darlington to North Lincolnshire this season, the two sides clash for a place in the third round of the Isuzu FA Trophy.

Speaking following the Iron’s defeat at King’s Lynn Town and Darlington’s 8-0 thumping at Chorley, first team manager Jimmy Dean said: “They’ve obviously had a heavy defeat in midweek away at Chorley, so they’re going to want to bounce back. They’ve shown their worth earlier in the week against Chester, winning against a good side. 

“We’ve got to be on it and we’ve got to react to Tuesday night. It was a defeat that hurt a little bit, but we want a positive reaction now. To be fair, the boys have given us it every time we’ve needed it, and I said that to them earlier on today. We need one again. We want to win, and we’ll be approaching it with that mentality.”

With a welcome diversion from the league, the Iron look for their first-ever win in the competition after only playing their first fixture in the FA Trophy eleven months ago.

Having been eliminated at the first hurdle against Wrexham in last season’s third round, Dean is aiming for cup progression.

“There will be a little bit of rotation, but the players coming in are more than able,” he continued. 

“They’re arguing that they should be starting, so it’s an opportunity for them to show that. From that, I want a win, I want to progress in the competition, and I want a headache for Tuesday night. The boys have done well for us so far this season, for the boys coming in, they need to put their markers down.

“We need to be coming out of this fixture with answers, not more questions.

“For us, at home, they’re all winnable. They’re all games we expect to win, against teams in this division. It doesn’t mean we win them all, but the expectancy is there. We’ll have the fans behind us, and we want to send them home happy.”

The game is the first of three on home soil in a week, with games against Southport and Warrington Town to follow in the league. Standards have been set hit, with Dean wanting maximum reward to end November on a high.

“We want to be coming out of these games with three wins,” he stated. 

“Cup progression, six points on the board. Then we go away to Hereford. We’ve been in the midst on a run of Saturday-Tuesday, so we get through this next week, and we have seven days between fixtures to settle ourselves down again.”

Callum Roberts was stretchered off in midweek. At first, it looked like a serious injury for the former Aberdeen attacker, but it materialised soon after the game that he’s suffered a clash of heads, and that it was a cut above his eye that forced the Iron to play the remainder of the game with 10 men.

“It was a split, a little bit of blood and he felt a bit dizzy. It wasn’t concussion, so Callum is available on Saturday,” he added.

“I think his performance was a little bit more positive as well. The first two times he came off the bench, it looked like he was blowing. I think he said that in his interview after the Gloucester game. After seeing him come on, he looked a bit more lively, a bit sharper, and a bit more himself. He’s still got a way to go, but I think his impact was a bit more positive.

“Coming out of that game, we’ve got no more injuries.”

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