Football in Berkshire
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FA Vase Third Round weekend previews for Ascot United and Binfield

Moles and Yellamen up for the cup as Vase fourth round beckons

FA Vase Third Round weekend previews for Ascot United and Binfield

It’s another big Saturday for two of Berkshire’s high-flying step 5 clubs in the Buildbase FA Vase as Ascot United and Binfield prepare for action.

The Yellamen are on the road to Kent to face Corinthian FC of the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division in the Third Round while Binfield host Southern Combination Premier Division AFC Uckfield Town at Hill Farm Lane.

Based on league position alone, both Berkshire sides are marginal favourites but Ascot go in off the back of a surprise defeat at Sheerwater while Binfield are suffering from a lack of competitive match action having not played since 16th November.

At this stage of the Vase, there simply are no easy ties and Saturday promises to be a cracking day of action up and down the country.

Form guide:

Binfield vs AFC Uckfield Town

Jamie McClurg. Photo: Neil Graham / ngsportsphotography.com

The Moles were narrowly beaten 2-1 last time out in a title chasing clash with Fairford Town but have three wins from their last four matches and sit seventh in the Uhlsport Hellenic League Premier Division with games in hand.

Uckfield are in tenth and unbeaten in 10 league and cup matches since a 2-1 defeat to Horsham YMCA at the end of September. Their chief goal-getter is 16 goal Liam Baitup.

Corinthian vs Ascot United

Harry Laflin. Photo: Neil Graham / ngsportsphotography.com

Corinthian look formidable opposition for Jamie Tompkins side, they have won their last five games since a 2-1 defeat by AFC Croydon Athletic a month ago and have impressively kept clean sheets in four of those. Goals are spread around the side with both Oscar Housego and Andres Tobon Losada on seven each.

Ascot have been in impressive form themselves though and will undoubtedly see the Sheerwater defeat as a blip coming as it did after a run of six wins in seven games – the odd one out being a 2-2 draw with Abbey Rangers in the Vase, and includes the 7-0 replay victory over the same side.

What the managers say:

Roger Herridge. Photo: Neil Graham.
Roger Herridge. Photo: Neil Graham.

Roger Herridge (Binfield): We’ve had Uckfield watched twice. Our preparations are going okay but a lack of competitive fixtures isn’t great. We’ve trained well and played a training game against Eversley & California on Monday night. The squad is looking good for weekend with only Asa Povey (injured) and Eddie Lee (university) missing. We will be boosted by the return of Joel Valentin to the squad.

Ascot United manager Jamie Tompkins. Photo: Neil Graham / ngsportsphotography.com

Jamie Tompkins (Ascot United): Preparations are going very well and nothing has changed against the norm. We have a great selection of players to choose from now we have the majority of players back from injury! I’ve not watched Corinthian myself but we have had them watched so we can be as best prepared as possible. I know they watched our 7-0 win so I’m sure they are more worried about us than we are of them!

FA Vase history

AFC Uckfield Town

Furthest: Fourth round in 2018/19, losing at home to Windsor.
Last season: As above.
Anything else?: Formed from a merger of AFC Uckfield and Uckfield Town in 2014, first entering the competition in 2015/16. The former had a brief history in the knockout tournament between 2010 and the merger but never progressed past the Second Qualifying Round.

Ascot United

Furthest: Quarter finals twice in 2012/13 and 2014/15.
Last season: First Qualifying Round defeat to Tadley Calleva.
Anything else?: Until Thatcham Town won it in 2017/18, were Berkshire’s most successful sides in the competition since their debut in 2010/11.

Binfield

Furthest: Fourth Round in 2011/12, a 7-1 defeat away to Tividale.
Last season: The curse of FiB struck as we watched the Moles beaten from a winning position, 3-2 at AFC Stoneham.
Anything else?: This season is the Moles first past the Qualifying Rounds since 2014.

Corinthian

Furthest: Fifth round in 1987/88, losing 2-1 to Clevedon Town.
Last season: Second round at home to Canterbury City.
Anything else?: Avenged their second round exit at home to Canterbury this season, winning 2-0. Have twice gone as far as the fourth round.

Predictions:

Football in Berkshire doesn’t often put it’s head on the block when it comes to predicting games for clubs we cover, preferring instead the comfy sofa setting we’ve had perched firmly on the fence.

However, in this case we’ll go with a Binfield 3-1 win and a narrow 3-2 win for Ascot.

What do you think? Take our twitter polls and let us know in the comments:

Binfield vs AFC Uckfield Town

Corinthian vs Ascot United

Anything else?

During the research for this piece, specifically on Corinthian, we’ve learned it might be good for Ascot fans to head over and make a bit of a day of it. The club is surrounded by a golf course that also caters for the excellent FootGolf. Visit the website here.

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Tom Canning

Tom is the co-editor of Football in Berkshire. He has played at the lowest possible level of football. In real life Tom works for Reach PLC. Former manager of Binfield Ladies in the Thames Valley Women's League.

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