The Saints made history by reaching the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup for the first time in the club’s history with last night’s penalty shoot-out replay win at Coalville Town.
You could say they did it the hard way too – coming back from 2-0 down to draw Saturday’s original tie 2-2, then turning around a 3-1 deficit last night – both times with two late goals. This after coming back from 3-0 down to win 4-3 in the previous round.
“I’m just getting my voice back now,” said Clements. “The dressing room was buzzing and we carried on the party back at the club until the tiredness kicked in. I’ve only had three or four hours’ sleep, but it was worth it.
“I don’t like doing it the hard way, but it does build more confidence. We’ve developed a real never say die attitude. We’ve always had the quality but just needed that will and desire – and that has really been unleashed in the cup.
“It’s the best squad I’ve ever had, and they’re growing and getting more confident. There are real resilience and mentality, but we need to show it in the league as well as we’ve got two huge games before the next round.
“Of course we’re going to win the FA Cup, so I’ve told the lads to enjoy it while it last as a cup run in always fantastic, but we’ve got to think about the season as a whole and not just about going to Alfreton on Saturday week.”
There were many heroes on the night – but two who stood out were keeper Harry Reynolds, who saved the crucial penalty as well as many important stops during the game, and Gary Wharton, who ended two years of injury hell with the equaliser.
“There are lots of little sub-plots,” Clements added. “Gary’s been out for two years with an anterior cruciate ligament injury but has worked so hard to get back – sometimes he worked until he was physically sick.
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