Buoyed by Vase journey
Danny Lye is focusing on other challenges following Ashford United’s exit from the FA Vase but says the run to the quarter-finals has left him with a new appreciation of the competition.
Player-boss Lye, inundated with good luck messages from managers and clubs in the build-up to Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Salisbury, said: “It was a good journey to get this far but they were better on the day.”
He added: “I didn’t pay it enough respect at the start and didn’t realise how big it was in Kent and the rest of the country.
“I had so many texts from managers, who I have never spoken to before, wishing us luck, which was nice and we want to have another good run again next season.”
Lye’s attention is now firmly on the race for the Southern Counties East League title and the Kent Senior Trophy, ahead of the home semi-final against Corinthian on Saturday.
The winners face Kent Invicta League Sheppey United, 1-0 victors at Erith & Belvedere on Sunday.
He said: “We all want to win some silverware this season and if we don’t, it will be a failure.”
Third place United were due back in league action at Croydon last night (Wednesday).
Goalkeeper George Kamurasi has received the all-clear after suffering a rib injury at Salisbury, while defender Adam Cuthbert could return at the weekend after being forced off with a hamstring problem in the second half.
United have signed former Gillingham No.1 Daren Hawkes as cover for Kamurasi – regular understudy Nick Luen is starting a new job.
Gary Clarke joined in the warm-up at Salisbury and says he is pleased with his rehab, following a lengthy lay-off with a torn abductor.
United are at home to Tunbridge Wells on Tuesday (7.45pm).
Meanwhile, the club are due in the High Court on Monday to face winding up proceedings.
The action, brought by Kent Attractions, involves a figure of around £110,000 but United CEO Denise Peach says the debt has now been paid.
She expects the hearing to be a formality, once all the relevant paper work has been presented.
Ashford’s Michael Phillips looks on as Danny Lye challenges Salisbury’s Tom Whelan