Brackley Town will play a Football League side for the first time in the club’s 123-history after booking their place in the first round proper of the FA Cup with a 1-0 win over Barrow on Tuesday evening.
An Izak Reid penalty 13 minutes into extra-time was the difference between the sides – with Saints ‘keeper Billy Turley producing a dramatic penalty save to deny Sam Sheridan late on.
Jon Brady’s side now go to Gillingham on Saturday, November 9, for what will be the club’s second appearance in the first round of the FA Cup.
Brady said: “I’m absolutely delighted. It was a special night which will live long in the memory of the players and the fans.
“The wind spoiled the game for 70 minutes, but the introduction of Owen Story sparked the game into life and lifted us, and then Reid’s penalty lifted the team again.
“People will talk about the penalty save but before that Billy made one incredible save with his legs, and then, for the penalty, I felt such an injustice that, for the first time in my career, I put my hands over my eyes and crouched to the floor, and couldn’t watch a penalty. It was only when my physio, Sam, started cheering that I realised Billy had saved it.
“To see what Billy’s doing and for him to have the desire is very special to see.
“We love the grind and we have to enjoy doing the ugly side of the game. Everyone plays for each other and even when we’re not playing well the players work hard and make it hard for teams to beat us.”
Brackley’s next round opponents, Gillingham, have endured a difficult start to life in League One following promotion last season. Martin Allen’s side currently lie 19th in the table having won just three of their opening 14 matches.
Looking ahead to the trip to Gillingham’s Priestfield Stadium, Brady added: “I think the most important thing to focus on is that it’ll be the club’s first game against a Football League side, which is something to be proud of.
“We have to make sure it’s a good day out for everyone but also we have to do ourselves justice and give the fans something to cheer about.”
TRAVEL INFORMATION: The supporters club are laying on coaches for the tie; £20 for adults, £18 for members and £10 for U16s. Coaches will leave St James Park at 10am. You can purchase tickets by either visiting a supporters club member in a club bar between 7-8pm tonight, Friday, or Monday, or at a supporters stall at Brackley’s home matches against Boston tomorrow, Saturday, or Telford next Tuesday. For information, leave details on answerphone 01280 841897.