'Dream come true' to draw Portsmouth in FA Cup says Harrow boss Baker
It’s a dream come true to draw former FA Cup winners Portsmouth says Harrow Borough manager Steve Baker.
James Ewington’s hat-trick was the crowning glory of a stunning second-half comeback from Harrow Borough that saw them overcome National League South opponents Chelmsford City.
The win saw them progress to the first round for the fifth time in the club’s history, and the first time since their trip to Northampton Town in 2016.
Harrow have since been drawn away to League One side Portsmouth, to be played on Saturday, November 6 weekend.
“I know it’s a cliché, but it’s what you dream of especially at non-league level, the first round for clubs at step three, four and five is the holy grail,” Baker said.
“You know you can earn a lot of money and then it’s a bit of luck to who you might get, so when that comes out, you couldn’t get a better draw.
“My phone hasn’t stopped since. It’s great for the club as it’s been a difficult few years, Covid has not helped at all, but now you can see the potentially revenue to help the club and keep it safe.
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“It’s the second time we’ve done it in five years. It’s a fantastic achievement for all the obvious reasons, the money and most importantly for the players.
“You’re sitting there watching the draw, I said to a couple of people there is some big teams in there, and the three or four you look at are Sunderland, Portsmouth, Wigan, Bolton and AFC Wimbledon.
“If you pull one of them out, you can’t get any bigger than that. When it came out as Portsmouth away it didn’t really sink in to be honest.”
Credit must go to the players for beating the Clarets says boss Baker.
“It’s been a fantastic couple of days, we had a tough start to the league, an awful pre-season.
“We’ve got ourselves playing a slightly different way, and all of a sudden things have started to take shape. Out of the last 11 we’ve won 9, so the form has been great and confidence is high.
“I felt we had a chance going into the match, we were 1-0 up and excellent in the first half hour, then we had a 10 minute spell where I'm not sure if the occasion got to us but we gave away a couple of goals.
“Credit to the boys, they came back from behind, put in a fantastic display. It was a brilliant achievement for the boys to get there."