NANTWICH Town’s Steve Jones is hoping for a late birthday present when they make the trip to Stevenage next weekend.
The veteran striker turned 41 last week and is still going strong with the Evo-Stik Northern Premier club.
Jones has played a huge part in helping the Dabbers reach the first round for only the second time in their history.
Now they head to League Two side Stevenage with Jones hopeful of pulling of an upset that he believes would be “one of the biggest highs” of his career.
The former Northern Ireland star said: “Every tie in this competition is massive and this is huge for us as a club. I know that shocks can happen and we have to believe it can happen for us next weekend.
“I was at Crewe Alexandra, when they were in what is now the Championship, and we were beaten by Telford United, so it can happen.
“It won’t be easy because they are a good side and they are in good form. Any sort of positive result would be one of the biggest highs of my career.”
The Dabbers currently sit third from bottom in the Evo-Stik League table after a summer of changes at the Weaver Stadium.
Former manager Phil Parkinson left for Altrincham with a number of key players following suit.
In their place, new manager Dave Cooke has brought in a new-look squad and Jones believes that a fresh impetus can actually work in Nantwich’s favour at Broadhall Way.
“We have been through big changes, losing the manager and some big players,”?he added. “We have a young side right now and they all have heart.
“There may be nerves ahead of the game, but there will also be a lack of fear. We will go there and give it our best shot.
“Who knows what can happen? This is the FA Cup after all.”
*This article originally featured in The @NonLeaguePaper, which is available every Sunday.