Harrow Borough defender eyes extended run in FA Trophy

Harrow Borough fans were in good voice throughout their FA Cup defeat at Northampton last Saturday.

Harrow Borough fans were in good voice throughout their FA Cup defeat at Northampton last Saturday. (Pic: BRUCE VIVEASH) - Credit: Archant

Harrow Borough defender Michael Peacock is aiming for a lengthy run in the FA Trophy after his side’s FA Cup adventure ended at Northampton.

Peacock and his team-mates put in a respectable display before eventually succumbing 6-0 against a strong Cobblers side in their first-round tie at Sixfields Stadium.

Now Borough must turn their attention to another cup competition – and another difficult away trip – when they face fellow Ryman League outfit Needham Market in the Trophy on Saturday.

“In the last few years, Wealdstone and Bognor Regis have both got to the semi-finals of the FA Trophy and there’s no reason why that can’t be us,” Peacock told the Times.

“We’ve shown we can compete with good players and teams. You can get to play good Conference sides – full-time teams – and it’s a chance to showcase what we’re about. We’ve not been overly successful in the Trophy so far in my time here, so it’d be nice to have a good run in that and get some good ties and test ourselves again.”

The 28-year-old central defender had only made one previous appearance in the first round of the FA Cup prior to the weekend, when he played for Hendon against Chelmsford City in 2010. And, despite their heavy defeat at Northampton, Peacock is inclined to regard Saturday’s game – where the visitors were cheered on by almost 400 Borough fans – as one of the highlights of his career.

“You’ve got to enjoy the occasion because they don’t come round very often,” he added. “We’ve got some good players here and good character and we’re not ashamed of how we played.

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“In patches we played some good football, but if you give Northampton a chance, they’re going to take it.”

Peacock added: You could see the professionalism – they were very difficult to break down and the fitness levels started to tell.

“But we can hold our heads up high. We even got applauded off by their fans – they could see we gave everything and this is definitely up there as one of the best days.”

Peacock actually had the first scoring chance of the game – a glancing header across the box – before Harrow fell behind to a stunning 25-yard strike by Paul Anderson.

Cobblers captain Marc Richards made it 2-0 inside 11 minutes and then all but killed the visitors off with another early in the second half before John-Joe O’Toole headed in number four.

Late goals by Matt Taylor and JJ Hooper added gloss to the scoreline but, according to Borough skipper Marc Charles-Smith, it was Anderson’s classy opener that underlined the enormity of the task facing his side.

“We knew it was going to be difficult and we started well, but you could see their quality from the first goal,” said Charles-Smith. “In our league no-one scores goals like that.

“It showed us just what we were up against and that goal just knocked us for six – excuse the pun!

“We tried, we had a game plan and it worked for a bit but their quality just shone through.

“But I’m proud of the boys. No-one hid – everyone wanted the ball and tried to express themselves and all in all it was a nice feeling, seeing how it is to be a pro for a day.”

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