BURY Town manager Richard Wilkins has warned his players that they could be on the wrong end of a cup upset tomorrow (3pm) if they do not improve.
The Blues enter the match on the back of four clean sheets and four victories, but lacklustre displays in wins against Aveley and Concord Rangers this week have left the Bury chief with plenty of cause for concern.
Redbridge are the Ram Meadow outfit’s hosts in the FA Cup second qualifying round and Bury enter the match knowing success would leave them just two wins away from a potential first round encounter against League One giants Sheffield Wednesday, Sheffield United or Charlton Athletic.
Wilkins said: “We’re a long way from where I would like us to be, and while you are winning people might not worry about it – but I’m worried about it.
“We’re not happy as a team. The players aren’t happy because there is something missing and it is difficult to put your finger on it.
“Maybe it’s a case of the boys getting a little bit anxious about things because people expect us to do well this year, and that’s something they have got to handle.
“The expectation at the club this season is much higher than it was last year.”
Bury enter the game eighth in the Ryman League Premier Division – five points off the top – but travel to a Redbridge side that have made a reasonable start to their Ryman One North campaign and were undefeated for six matches in all competitions before Tuesday night’s 3-2 defeat at home to leaders Grays Athletic.
The Blues have several personnel issues with Callum Kearns (knee), James Scowcroft (groin), skipper Tom Bullard (suspended) and Sam Reed (hamstring) ruled out, while doubts remain over Russell Short (back) and Kieran Leabon (back), despite the latter’s three-match suspension coming to an end this week. Reed could miss the next two weeks of the season.
Sam Nunn will step up to partner Roscoe Hipperson at the heart of Bury’s defence, with ex-Leyton Orient youngster Jack Cawley (suspended) unable to provide back-up.
Bury (from): Clark, Coulson, Cunningham, Essandoh, Fenner, Garnham, Hipperson, Hunter, Ingram, Kennedy, Leabon, Nunn, Nurse, L Reed, Robbins, Short, L Smith, S Smith.
n Bury are set to resume their Ryman Premier campaign when they travel to AFC Hornchurch on Tuesday (7.45pm).
However, an FA Cup replay would take precedence, meaning that match would be postponed and the Blues’ rematch with Redbridge held at Ram Meadow instead.