STEVE Wilkes could be seeing double by Saturday evening, when he hopes Padiham will be in the hat for the next round of the FA Cup.

The Storks lock horns with North West Counties Premier Division rivals Silsden in league action at Keighley Road tonight – before meeting the Cobbydalers for a second Roses joust in the FA Cup four days later.


“It is never ideal when you have to play the same opposition twice in four days away, but we will be going there tonight and on Saturday with one aim: victory,” said Wilkes.

Wilkes said his team ‘showed bags of character’ to win their extra preliminary round tie at Whickham, meaning a £1,500 cash boost for the Arbories coffers.

Wilkes added: “The FA Cup is massively important to a club of our size and if you win three ties that could mean seven or eight thousand pounds in the bank, so there is a huge incentive to do well.”

The winners will host either Marske United or Lancaster City in the first round qualifying next month.

Padiham have made a satisfactory start to life back in the North West Counties League following last season’s fall from grace after two years in the Northern Premier League.

The nucleus of the 2014-15 squad – including star striker Brett Ormerod who joined Bamber Bridge – have left.

“I’ve had to do a big rebuilding job, regroup and start again. There was a big hangover after last season and we were struggling for numbers two weeks before the start of the season,” added the manager.

“We’ve had a couple of decent league wins, though, coming back from 2-0 down at Atherton Colleries to win 4-2 and we beat Ashton in our last game, so I’m fairly pleased.”

Padiham’s only defeat was a 2-0 reverse to Barnoldswick Town a week ago and Wilkes observed: “We were very poor.

“Barnoldswick had just come off a 5-0 defeat to Colne and we just never got started.”

Wilkes is likely to be without strikers Chappy Massamba and Alex Murphy tonight.

“That’s a big blow, but I’ve brought in experienced midfielder Matt Cross and our captain Martin Parks is nearly back to full fitness now, so I’m sure we’ve enough to be competitive and make a push towards the top six.”