TAUNTON Town begin their FA Cup campaign at home to Larkhall Athletic today (ko 3pm), bringing back memories of last season’s historic run in the competition.

The preliminary round is a far cry from the first round proper – the stage reached by the Peacocks last year – and manager Leigh Robinson says a repeat would be “unbelievably difficult”.

He said: “Of course we’d like to do well, but to repeat last year would be unbelievably difficult – it’s only the second time in 30-odd years that it’s happened.

“But we want a couple of wins in the competition under our belts, as it brings in valuable money for the club.

“While the FA Cup run was magnificent last year, and we wouldn’t have swapped it for anything, it did take its toll physically come the end of the season.

“If you offer me two or three Cup wins and a glorious exit, I’d take that and then focus on the league.”

Their bid for promotion from Evo-Stik Southern League West has got off to a fine start, as they followed up an opening day win at Cirencester with a home victory against Mangotsfield.

Lewis Powell scored twice in the former match, and it was captain Matt Wright who stepped up with a brace at the Viridor Stadium on Tuesday night, as the Peacocks snuck a 2-1 win.

Robinson said on Tuesday: “The performance was not our best, but it was just a case of grinding out the victory.

“When we scored the first we looked dangerous and could have had a couple more, but goals change games and we gave away a pretty terrible one.

“After half time we huffed and puffed, didn’t create an awful lot, but that’s when you need your big man [Wright] to come up with the goods, and he did.”

On his skipper’s performance, the manager added: “He was absolutely fantastic tonight, as he was on Saturday without scoring.

“It’s good that he’s got himself on the scoresheet tonight, as he does get a bit down if he has a drought for a couple of games, and it was at a crucial time too.”

Robinson also paid tribute to Owen Irish, who led the Peacocks out on his 300th club appearance, his 10 years at Town making him their longest-serving player.

The boss said: “300 appearances for a non-league side is pretty unheard of – rarely do you get that kind of loyalty.

“Congratulations to him, and hopefully he’ll go on to make it 350 and 400.”


TAUNTON said farewell to one member of their squad yesterday, as forward Craig Duff departed for fellow Evo-Stik Southern League West side Bideford.

Duff's prospective playing time was likely to be reduced by Matt Wright and Lewis Powell up front, and so he has moved for more game time.

Whether that will leave the Peacocks short up front, or whether the likes of Les Afful, Ollie Chamberlain, Joe Charles and Ross Staley can chip in with enough goals from attacking midfield positions, will make itself clear as the season progresses.