Gateshead “fully aware” of Marske United threat in FA Cup tie

By Mark Carruthers

Gateshead player-manager Mike Williamson insisted he will not warn his players of the threat possessed by FA Cup opponents Marske United – because they are already “fully aware” of the task ahead of them against the Northern Premier League East Division side.

Photo: Mark Fletcher | MI News

The Seasiders have been in insatiable form in the FA Cup this season and head into Saturday’s eagerly anticipated clash as the competition’s top goalscorers with 20 goals in their four ties.

The Heed will also have to contend with in-form striker Adam Boyes, who has fired his way to 21 goals in 15 goals in all competitions including 10 in the FA Cup.

Carl Jarrett’s men head into the tie sat in second place in the East Division after winning eight of their nine league fixtures and Williamson was on hand to witness their 4-1 home triumph against Brighouse Town earlier this week.

The former Newcastle United defender saw enough from the Seasiders to enhance his belief that his players have to be at their best to claim a win at Mount Pleasant.

“We don’t need to warn the lads about Marske and the threat they possess because they are fully aware already,” said the Heed boss.

“We went to watch them on Tuesday night and they were very good.

“You can see they’ve got a game-plan, they have big and strong physical players that can get the ball down and play too.

“We could see how tough it could be on Saturday.

“It’s all about our mentality and our approach to the game.

“The pitch is going to be a leveller, so we just have to play the conditions and play with intelligence and energy.

“It’s all about finding the best way to win the game.”

The winner in Saturday’s tie will enter the first round draw on Sunday afternoon with a potential tie against the likes of former FA Cup winners Sunderland, Portsmouth and Bolton Wanderers in the offing.

But despite a potential glamour tie being just 90 minutes away, Williamson refused to look beyond what he described as “a major test” against a Marske side looking to reach the first round for the first time in their history.

“I always have the mentality of thinking about the next game only,” he explained.

“We aren’t focused anywhere else and it would be incredibly naive if we were to look beyond Marske.

“It’s a very good test for us and we can’t be thinking of what lies next, we are only thinking about the major test we have in front of us on Saturday.”

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