Reality trip for Morecambe

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The Independent Football

After making the most of their status as underdogs last weekend, Morecambe and the other Nationwide Conference clubs who took part in the third round of the FA Cup will have to play the role of wary giants this weekend.

After making the most of their status as underdogs last weekend, Morecambe and the other Nationwide Conference clubs who took part in the third round of the FA Cup will have to play the role of wary giants this weekend.

Morecambe enjoyed their brief spell in the limelight prior to their 3-0 home defeat to Ipswich Town in the FA Cup, but tomorrow it is back to non-League reality and a trip to Victoria Park to play Lancashire rivals Burscough in the third round of the FA Umbro Trophy.

Morecambe won the Trophy in 1974 but their recent record in the tournament is poor. Last year they were beaten by humble Blakenall at this stage and Burscough will offer another stiff test.

The UniBond League club's managerial team are both Morecambe old boys. The man in charge at Victoria Park is John Davison, a former assistant manager at Christie Park, while his assistant Peter King was part of the Shrimpers' squad which won promotion to the Conference in 1995.

The Trophy holders, Kingstonian, were the only non-League team to win in the FA Cup last weekend. After their success at Southend United, tomorrow's trip to Staines Town of the Ryman League First Division should hold few fears for Geoff Chapple's side.

Chapple is the most successful manager in the Trophy's history. He has managed the winners in five of the last seven seasons and his most recent defeat in the competition was back in October 1997, when Kingstonian lost 2-1 at Crawley Town.

The Conference leaders, Yeovil Town, have a derby against Paul Bodin's Bath City while another side who reached the third round of the FA Cup, Chester City, have a tough home tie against their former Football League rivals Doncaster Rovers.

Dagenham & Redbridge may be vulnerable in their home tie against Weymouth if they allow themselves to be distracted by the prospect of Wednesday's televised Cup replay against Charlton Athletic.

Last season's beaten Trophy finalists, Kettering Town, are also in some jeopardy this weekend. Bottom of the Conference and with questions being asked about the future of their manager Peter Morris, on Sunday they make the short journey along the A14 to face Histon.

The Cambridgeshire club won the Jewson Eastern League last term and are in their first season in the Dr Martens League.

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