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Tiptree boss blasts back at critics

PUBLISHED: 13:08 21 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:35 03 March 2010

VASE SOCCER: While AFC Sudbury manager Keith Martin has no doubts about the strength of his squad, FA Carlsberg Vase semi-final opponents Tiptree United have decided to bring in 'hired assassins'.

WHILE AFC Sudbury manager Keith Martin has no doubts about the strength of his squad, FA Carlsberg Vase semi-final opponents Tiptree United have decided to bring in 'hired assassins'.

These Jewson League clubs meet at the Kingsmarsh Stadium, Sudbury on Saturday with the second leg at Tiptree seven days later. The aggregate winners play either Whitley Bay or Durham City in the final at Villa Park on May 11.

Tiptree manager Neil Farlie has recently signed Colin Wall (from Thurrock) and striker Andrew Aransibia (Ford). James Keeble (Maldon), Dave Streetley (Heybridge) and Michael Bavester, who is goalkeeping cover for Sid Haygreen, have also been signed.

Keeble is cup-tied while Streetley is returning to fitness. Aransibia played for Ford in their home defeat with Bognor last Saturday and could well be needed by the Ryman Premier club this weekend.

Farlie, whose side has been doubled by Sudbury in the league and are bottom of the current form league, stands by his decision to bring in 'outsiders'.

Answering his critics he said: "Irrespective of what people say, I have signed players who can fill gaps in my side.

"Whether these boys prove to be better than I already have at my disposal remains to be seen. I've got striker Steve Parnell very doubtful with injury and I'm going to look a right mug if I don't bother to go out and at least get cover.

"I don't have the same sized squad as other Jewson teams and want to be competitive for the biggest clashes in the club's history. I certainly make no apologies for giving Tiptree every opportunity of reaching the Vase final."

AFC Sudbury's league form has dipped recently, but Farlie is not fooled.

He said: "Our league form has been pretty poor all season, so we not interested that Sudbury are suddenly losing and drawing matches. We know they are going to be tough."

Martin is not criticising Tiptree for bringing in new players. He said: "Their manager has got to do whatever he wants, but I wouldn't do it.

"It can backfire on you; I know what I would think if I were a player in such a position. If you are loyal to your players hopefully they will go out there and do a job for you."

Ipswich-based central defender Chris Howlett has been struggling with injury but said: "I aim to be ready for Saturday, if selected."


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