Underdogs on the hunt for FA Cup scalps

  • On the ball: Ralph Bean Jr, a former winner of the FA Cup with North Village, takes on St George’s defender Jarreau Hayward while playing in the competition  for Footy Kings in 2018.  Footy Kings play St David’s in the preliminary round on Sunday at Bernard Park. (Photograph by Lawrence Trott)

    On the ball: Ralph Bean Jr, a former winner of the FA Cup with North Village, takes on St George’s defender Jarreau Hayward while playing in the competition for Footy Kings in 2018. Footy Kings play St David’s in the preliminary round on Sunday at Bernard Park. (Photograph by Lawrence Trott)


Tuff Dogs and Footy Kings will be looking to carry the Corona League flag with pride when they take on First Division opponents in the first matches of the FA Cup competition.

Footy Kings, who lost to St George’s in back-to-back preliminary-round matches in 2017 and 2018 and suffered a 3-2 defeat to Vasco in 2019, will try their luck again against St David’s tomorrow at Bernard Park, hoping to pull off a Cup upset like teams from the old Commercial League used to do in the early rounds of the competition.

Tuff Dogs will have to wait to play their match against Flanagan’s Onions after the Bermuda Football Association announced yesterday that the match, scheduled for today, has now been put back to Tuesday night at Goose Gosling Field.

They are the only two Corona League teams in this year’s competition and Footy Kings, who have former Premier Division players like Ralph Bean, Kijuan Franks, Jason Davis, Darius Cox and Aquino Grant in their ranks, will be aiming to use that experience to be competitive against a youthful St David’s side.

However, Footy Kings still have a slight disadvantage as this will be their first match of the new season as the Corona League season is yet to start.

St David’s played their first match last weekend against Ireland Rangers, drawing 1-1.

“This is our first competitive match, but we’ve playing practice matches, so we’re confident as a team we can put in a good performance,” said St David’s coach Vinzie Zuill.

“We are playing in a league above, so we don’t want to take it for granted.”

Footy Kings went down 4-1 to St George’s in extra-time in 2017 when Donavan Thompson netted all four St George’s goals in their come-from-behind win after the score was 1-1 at the half.

The following year St George’s beat them 3-0, while last year Footy Kings only lost to Vasco by the odd goal.

“We have been competitive in the FA Cup, losing by one goal last year so we know we can compete,” Zuill added.

“We are trying to prepare the best we can, as the other teams may have had a game or two before these FA Cup games.

“We have the experience so what will come into play is match fitness.

“Darius Cox started with us last year to get match fit and now he has rejoined us for this season.”

The Corona League which did not finish its 2019-20 season because of the Covid-19 pandemic, with Footy Kings sitting in second place at the time, five points behind West End United who had a game in hand on their closest rivals and five games remaining.

“We were second and in the Corona League Cup final against Robin Hood which never got played,” Zuill said.

Michael McGrath, the Corona League president, said the league will decide whether to go ahead with their cup final once they begin their season.

Five preliminary round matches are scheduled with the winners joining the eleven Premier Division teams for the first-round draw which is scheduled for January.

In tomorrow’s three all-First Division ties, Boulevard will take on Vasco at Goose Gosling Field for the second straight week, looking to carry on from their 3-1 win in the league last Sunday, while Hamilton Parish meet Ireland Rangers at Southampton Oval and Young Men’s Social Club play Wolves at Police Field.

All the matches start at noon, except for Boulevard and Vasco who kick off at 12.30pm.

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Published Oct 10, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 10, 2020 at 10:42 am)

Underdogs on the hunt for FA Cup scalps

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