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Tafazolli: FA Cup offers huge incentives

4 December 2014

Defender ready for challenging second round tie against Cambridge United.

Defender Ryan Tafazolli says the prospect of a glittering third round tie against one of England’s elite clubs will act as a huge incentive for us going into Saturday’s FA Cup round two clash with Cambridge United.

Our team, who missed out on a trip to Liverpool at this stage last term, go into the clash at the R Costings Abbey Stadium as underdogs as our opponents have won their previous three home matches.

“It’s going to be a really tough test for us again,” said Tafazolli.

“We played them earlier in the season and it proved to be a tight affair, so it’s going to be a real test again on Saturday and we need to make sure we’re ‘on it’ and get through to the third round, which would be a great achievement.”

He continued: “I think we’ve had quite a lot of luck when it’s come to big draws. Last year, we narrowly missed out [on the chance of] playing against Liverpool two years in a row, so hopefully if we beat Cambridge we’ll draw someone else who are in the Premier League again.

“Getting to the third round is a massive incentive for us. We know what we could come up against if we beat Cambridge, so fingers crossed that we perform well on the day.”

Looking back at our 1-0 win at Concord Rangers in the last round, Tafazolli added: “It’s always nice to play against your former team and it proved to be a really tough test, so I’m happy we came through it and got into the next round.

“I gave the lads the ‘heads up’ that [the stadium] wasn’t going to be the best facility-wise, so we just knew we had to get there and do the job.”

Tafazolli is also glad to have again established himself in our side over the past few weeks, following a spell on the sidelines through injury.

“It’s always a worry with me when I get injured,” added the centre-back. “I’ve been out for long periods of time before, so I’m happy that my rehab went well with the physio and now I’m back fighting fit so I can try and get a full season behind me.

A full interview with Ryan Tafazolli will be available on Stags Player later. To subscribe, click here.

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