STEVE EVANS has enjoyed some great moments in the Welsh Cup and believes he can do so again with Colwyn Bay when they travel to Connah’s Quay Nomads in the quarter-finals on Saturday (Feb 19, 2:30pm).
The former Welsh international defender admits that the competition has a special place in his heart, having won two finals as a player with TNS, in 2005 (prior to signing for Wrexham) and 2012, and then again as assistant manager to Scott Roscoe when the club (previously known as Llansantffraid) won it for a seventh time it in 2019 – beating Connah’s Quay in the final.
After taking over as manager of the Seagulls last month, Steve has seen the side stretch their unbeaten record under his stewardship to four games, in which Player of the Month James Kirby has netted seven of the 14 goals scored. They’ll have a big following for the game on Saturday, but the manager knows pulling off a cup upset presents the biggest challenge so far.
Nomads are going for a cup double, having recently pocketed the MG Cup, and have lost only twice in their last 16 cup and league outings since Craig Harrison took over as head coach in September.
Although they are only midtable in the Welsh Premier, they boast the division’s joint best defensive record along with runaway leaders TNS (16 goals conceded).
Steve, who was with Connah’s Quay on loan for a spell in the 2014/15 season, commented: “I’ve got nothing but respect for Connah’s Quay as a club. I’ve got nothing but respect for the coaches and the manager, who I know really well.
“It is going to be tough, but if we show the desire that we showed in the second half against Buckley and the football that we showed in the first half, and put it all together, then I firmly believe we can go there and get the win.
“They are coming off two big wins – in the MG Cup final (against Cardiff Met) and against Flint, but we’ve got to go there and focus on us.
“We’ll do our homework, I know what Connah’s Quay are all about. It is going to be tough and the lads are going to have to dig deep, but we’ll be prepared and it will be all about how we perform.”
It is 30 years since the Bay were last in a Welsh Cup semi-final (losing to Hednesford Town) and Steve would love to see them get there again.
“It’s a competition that’s given me fond memories,” he said. “It has a special place in my heart because I’ve won it on a number of occasions, as a player and as a coach.
“It has a fantastic history and we want to be part of that history. We want to put our name in that history.
“We’ll be ready to step on that pitch and give everything for the fans, for the club and for ourselves.
“We all want to achieve the same thing.”