NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Soham Town Rangers in the money thanks to fine FA Cup showing

Soham Town Rangers player/assistant boss Erkan Okay. Picture: JAMES RICHARDSON

Soham Town Rangers player/assistant boss Erkan Okay. Picture: JAMES RICHARDSON - Credit: Archant

Soham Town Rangers made FA Cup progress on a day of footballing quality and financial gain.

The Greens saw off lower-level Whitton United 3-0 in a first qualifying round tie at Julius Martin Lane last Saturday.

It was a triumph which earned £4,500 in prize to add to the near £3,000 they also picked up in the previous round.

Cameron Watson headed Rangers ahead nine minutes before the break and Toby Andrews doubled the advantage midway through the second half, Matty Allan then applied the icing to the cake in stoppage time after the visitors were reduced to 10 men.

Rangers' reward is an away tie against higher-level Cray Wanderers in the second qualifying round next weekend. It will take place on Sunday, September 22 due to the BetVictor Premier Division hosts ground-sharing at Bromley.

Player/assistant boss Erkan Okay said: "It took a while for us to get going, but we got ahead late in the first half and then played really well in the second half.

"It's a great competition to be involved in and it's really pleasing to get through a couple of rounds.

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"The prize money will help the club hugely and hopefully we can earn a few more quid as well.

"It will be a tough tie in the next round away to a higher-level, but we'll go there full of confidence and hopeful of causing an upset."

Any thoughts of the FA Cup must go on the back-burner as Soham face two important league clashes in the coming days.

They go to Grays Athletic this Saturday, 3pm, before entertaining Cambridge City in a derby clash on Tuesday, 7.45pm.

Soham were beaten 5-3 by Cambridge City in the Velocity Trophy competition last week.

"Grays are a big club who will be looking to challenge so we know we're in for a tough test," added Okay. "Hopefully we can keep our decent run going and get a result to take into the derby on Tuesday.

"We'll certainly have to defend better against City than we did in the League Cup game last week when conceding five goals was a big disappointment.

"But other than that we have played at a good level lately."

Top-scorer Sam Mulready should be back after being substituted as a precaution last Saturday due to a hamstring niggle.

Soham stage their big charity bash on Sunday.

The Arsenal Legends will grace Julius Martin Lane to take on a Stuart Hamilton XI in an event held in memory of the club's late former chairman.

The match is at 1pm, but there are many other attractions with gates opening at 10am. Tickets are £5 for adults and £2 for Under 14s.

The proceeds will be split between Arthur Rank Hospice and the Arsenal Foundation.