The Emirates FA Cup First Round is almost upon us, and for Eastleigh FC, that means another chance to make a few headlines and upset some of the Football League’s established names.
Last season the Hampshire outfit dumped Crewe Alexandra out of the competition before coming within three minutes of reaching the Fourth Round against former Premier League club Bolton Wanderers.
They’re back for more this year, under the experienced Ronnie Moore, and the 19/10 odds on the National League side indicate the very real prospect of the Spitfires kicking off the First Round weekend with an upset.
The Non-League outfit have lost only two of their last ten home games, keeping an impressive five clean sheets in eight.
In contrast, League One Swindon make the short trip to Hampshire with just two wins and an EFL Trophy penalty victory against Oxford from their last 11 fixtures.
Plus, the Robins have won just once away from the County Ground since February.
So with the scent of a Cup upset very much in the air, we’ve picked out three men we reckon could prove key to Eastleigh beginning another famous Emirates FA Cup run…
No, your smartphone isn’t broken. This is the same Jamie Cureton who was tormenting defenders almost 20 years ago.
Now 41, Cureton is still fit as a fiddle and joined Eastleigh in mid September.
His experience and eye for goal could prove invaluable in dispatching the club he spent the 2005-06 season with.
If Cureton brings the knowhow, then Coulson is the man to bring the excitement.
The 22-year-old – capable at right-back or right-midfield – has already netted six times from just 12 appearances.
With four of those strikes coming at Ten Acres, Swindon had better ensure they’ve done their homework on this attack-minded wide man.
With Coulson causing trouble on the flanks, and Cureton ready to guile his way past defenders, French striker Mikael Mandron brings the physicality.
At 6ft 3in, the former Sunderland forward is set to bring about a whole host of problems for the Swindon defence.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing