Cheltenham's 'Dream' Draw
Robins' chairman and manager excited with Everton tie.
Cheltenham Town chairman Paul Baker has labelled their upcoming FA Cup third round clash with Everton as ‘the dream tie’.
It was confirmed on Tuesday evening that the Blues will travel to Whaddon Road on Monday 7 January after the Robins ran out 2-1 winners over Hereford United in their second round replay.
Whilst acknowledging the financial benefits that come with such a lucrative draw, Baker also believes that Everton’s visit will get the Gloucestershire town buzzing with excitement.
“We are really looking forward to welcoming Bill [Kenwright] and all the fans to Cheltenham,” said Baker.
“I’m sure that Liverpool people will think of Cheltenham as a racecourse, but let me assure them that we have a pretty decent football club too!
“It’s a dream tie. We had Newcastle with Alan Shearer and co here several years ago and we went to Spurs last year at the same stage of the competition.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity for a club of League One and League Two level to make a huge difference to their financial stability.
“We have had a decent relationship with Everton over the last few years. We took Luke Garbutt on loan last season and he did very well for us, playing in the play-off final at Wembley.
“It is a one-off opportunity and a great occasion for the players to pit themselves against top-quality Premier League players, manager and coaching team.
“For the fans, it will be nice for them to enjoy a full house and all the razzmatazz that goes with it.”
Cheltenham manager Mark Yates echoed his chairman’s comments, saying that a home tie against Everton was a reward for disposing of Yate Town and Hereford in the first two rounds of the competition.
The Robins achieved their win on an evening when League Two Bradford City produced a shock in the Capital One Cup against Arsenal.
But Yates was quick to point to the quality contained in David Moyes’ squad and the sizeable challenge that lies ahead for his team.
“I’ve seen the chairman and he is financially delighted, but I’m delighted for the boys because they deserve a crack at a Premier League team,” explained Yates, who has been in charge at Whaddon Road since December 2009.
“We had Tottenham away last year and that was a great day and we did ourselves proud. This time we are at home, but let’s not kid ourselves – they [Everton] are a quality side.
“The underdogs fight and when it comes round to Monday 7 January we will be the underdog and hopefully we can put in a decent performance.
“Hopefully he [Moyes] will send an Under-21 side but I’m sure he won’t. They have got a real quality squad and are on a fantastic run in the Premier League.
“It will be a great day for the supporters and it’s nice that it is at home. It will be good to get a Premier League team at Whaddon Road.”
Ticket information for the third round tie can be found by clicking here.