Prize pot is a big incentive for AFC Telford in the FA Cup

The FA Cup, FA Trophy and FA Vase are potential gold mines for non-league clubs and AFC Telford are no different as they prepare get stuck into the world’s oldest football competition.

Incentive: Cup win could help Cowan’s budget
Incentive: Cup win could help Cowan’s budget

A prize of £6,750 is on offer for victors in the FA Cup second qualifying round, which the Bucks contest with lower-ranked Nantwich Town tomorrow.

That figure is not to be sniffed at in the slightest. Clubs don’t budget for these cash boosts and any prize money will be a shot in the arm to manager Gavin Cowan.

More than £11,000 is on offer for the winners of the next round – a run of a few wins can do wonders for the accounts and the club’s profile. A run will help add numbers to the gate and bring more publicity.

Cowan’s men welcome the Dabbers from the division below and will expect to progress. That is not saying they will take Dave Cooke’s men lightly, as Nantwich’s league rivals Warrington Town secured the Bucks’ scalp in the third qualifying round of last season’s competition.

The Telford boss explained: “The competition is important for the football club.

“Specifically with the finances, realistically we are probably bottom five in terms of budget in this league.

“So the FA Cup can always help out the finances. We’re always on the look out for extra investment.

“It’s an important competition for every club at this level, everybody wants to win in the FA Cup.”

The Bucks know they face a side full of character tomorrow. The Dabbers staged a superb two-goal turnaround overhaul in their most recent outing, coming from 2-0 to beat Scarborough Athletic on home soil.

Top scorer Joe Malkin netted the second, a typical poacher’s effort to draw the sides level. Skipper Caspar Hughes rocketed in the winner from 25 yards. The comeback was complete inside nine minutes. The Bucks are, of course, more testing opposition than Scarborough, but Telford know tomorrow’s never-say-die visitors will push them all the way.

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