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Gainsborough FA Cup Preview

Harrogate Town host Gainsborough Trinity on Saturday afternoon with a place in the Emirates FA Cup First Round up for grabs.



Dave Frecklington’s side only escaped relegation by a point last season and once again are threatened by the drop as The Holy Blues sit 21st in the National League North.

Only North Ferriby have conceded more league goals than Saturday’s opponents, but their FA Cup campaign so far has been a different story.

A replay victory over Leamington ensured Gainsborough’s passage into the 4th Qualifying Round, after an even more impressive victory at Spennymoor sealed their progression in the round before.

Saturday’s visitors have lost just one of their last six, are unbeaten in their last four away games and will be desperate to reach the First Round for the second time in three years.

It has been five years since Town progressed past this stage of the competition, though just one loss in the last 18 fixtures in all competitions has Simon Weaver’s side brimming with confidence.

Town have also lost only one of their last eight FA Cup matches; at this stage last year as Halifax made it through at Town’s expense.

Harrogate and Gainsborough have never met before in the FA Cup, though have plenty of recent league meetings, the last of which saw Town win an incredible nine-goal thriller at Northolme courtesy of Terry Kennedy’s late header.

In fact, the last three meetings between the sides have resulted in away wins, though Weaver will be hoping that changes on Saturday.

He said: “We will be looking to put in a better performance than when we met earlier in the season.

“Gainsborough have had some good results at Spennymoor, York and last week at Tamworth so we will have to be on our mettle.

“The FA Cup is a big chance for players and teams to generate a lot of excitement in the local area and we are very motivated to do well and go as far as we can.”