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1 November 2012

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Boss looking forward to Nuneaton test

With the Town enjoying a rich vein of form and currently sitting handsomely second in the league table, Town boss Paul Buckle was happy with the momentum and buzz around the club going into this weekend’s FA Cup first round tie against Nuneaton.

“FA Cup weeks always bring a buzz - I've always found that as a player and a manager,” Buckle said at his pre-match press conference on Thursday.

“It's nice to get away from the league. It was good to get through against Cambridge where we put on a really good show. We've been at it in the league as well and we're on a really good run so there is a definitely a buzz about the place. We've got some good momentum and were desperate to keep hold of that.”

With cup competitions coming to fruition early on in the campaign Buckle is confident his side can compete in all formats of the game and carry their form through a congested schedule. 

“I really enjoy the FA Cup, I said this before the Cambridge game,” said the boss. “It's not a distraction from the league at all. Of course if you have a run you can fall behind with games which isn't great but we want to be in the FA Cup and it's an important game for us.”

This will be the second time Nuneaton visit Kenilworth Road this season and Buckle expects another tough encounter as both fight for a second round spot. 

“I'm sure there will be no change in approach,” said Buckle. “A lot of sides come here and set about to make it hard for us by putting a lot of bodies behind the ball. 

“They will be looking to get the crowd on our back and make it as difficult as possible for us but the boys can handle it. We're in good form and very much looking forward to the game.”

With the meeting fresh in the memory of both clubs the Hatters manager commented on how the fixture just three weeks ago at Kenilworth Road will help both sides prepare for the FA Cup clash this weekend. 

“It's good for both sides in terms of knowing what's coming,” he said.

“We're not going to change our philosophy. We will go to win the game and I can't see them changing their game plan too much either. Before they came here and sat five at the back with three in the middle and tried to pick us off which nearly worked for them, so if we have to be patient again we will.”

With many sides still in awe of the magic brought by the FA Cup, the Town boss has talked up what a fantastic competition it is and how he still holds it in the highest regard. 

“Before the Cambridge game I was a little reluctant to say that I'd been on good runs in this cup,” admitted Buckle, who enjoyed successful cup runs whilst at Torquay as a player and manager.

“I've been fortunate enough to get into the third and fourth round and it does bring a lot of money to the football club. In the last five or so seasons I've enjoyed good cup runs and I don't want that to change so I've emphasised to the players how important the cup game is. 
“Whether it's a cup, league, development or a training game we ask them to play the same way – and that is to win.”

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