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League leaders aiming to avenge heavy FA Cup defeat when Brantham Athletic visit on Friday night

PUBLISHED: 10:12 14 September 2017 | UPDATED: 10:12 14 September 2017

Kevin O'Donnell (left) and Ian Watson will be reunited on the touchline on Friday night.

Kevin O'Donnell (left) and Ian Watson will be reunited on the touchline on Friday night.

Friday Night Football returns to the Goldstar Ground on Friday night (tomorrow) and offers up a real mouth-watering fixture (KO 7.45pm).

Brantham Athletic are heading to the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division, the visitors revisiting the side they beat 7-2 on the opening day of the season, in the FA Cup.

Since that encounter in the FA Cup the visitors have had mixed fortunes, while the Seasiders have been on a seemingly unstoppable roll, winning every one of their opening nine league fixtures.

Cup and Vase football aside, which is always a bit of a lottery for clubs at this level, Brantham have won three and drawn one of their last four games, conceding just one goal in the process and scoring 13 times.

Felixstowe will feel that they have a very good chance of keeping that run going in this game and know that should they win their games in hand, they could well be in the mix at the top end of the table.

The Seasiders’ management will no doubt be instilling into their side that this is just another game in a long season, and the same work rate and application they have shown in the last nine games, is required once again.

Joint-manager Kevin O’Donnell missed last week’s trip to Thetford, spending the weekend competing in the Great North Run and will be eager to see his side carry on where they left off.

Fellow joint-manager Ian Watson, writing in his programme notes, feels that the FA Cup defeat really did refocus the management and players’ minds, and enabled them to go on their current run, but he has no illusions of this being anything other than a very tough encounter.

The FA Cup game between the two sides attracted just over 250 supporters, but the home side are hoping that figure will be surpassed and be nearer their average of 330 for home games this season, which in itself will provide a great Friday night atmosphere for a fixture between two footballing sides.

Elsewhere in the league on Saturday, Stanway Rovers travel to Fakenham, Walsham le Willows visit Godmanchester, Haverhill Borough go to Gorleston, Haverhill Rovers entertain Great Yarmouth Town, Stowmarket Town head to Histon and Long Melford are at home to FC Clacton,

Ipswich Town travel to Bolton Wanderers for a Championship clash on Saturday (3pm).

Bersant Celina could have joined Bolton Wanderers in the summer rather than moving to Ipswich Town - and he’s convinced he made the right decision.

Ipswich Town’s Bryan Klug was spotted keeping an eye on Colchester United and Wycombe at the weekend.

Sports writer Andy Warren takes a look at Ipswich Town’s business in the January transfer window so far.

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Ipswich Town U18 Academy boss Alan Lee is hoping his young charges can keep up the proud Blues tradition of success in youth football, with victory against Dagenham & Redbridge in the FA Youth Cup Fourth Round tonight, at Portman Road, 7pm ko.

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy believes young defender Chris Smith returned from his loan spell at Chelmsford ‘more of a bloke’ and is hopeful he has a first team future.

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