CLITHEROE will be out to avenge their loss to Chorley in last season’s Lancashire FA Challenge Cup final when the clubs go head-to-head tonight in the standout tie of the quarter-finals.

The Magpies beat the Blues 3-0 at the Macron Stadium in March to claim the cup for a record 16th time.


And they will be favourite to progress to the last four this evening given they play two rungs higher up the non-league ladder than Clitheroe.

That said Chorley will go into the Victory Park clash on the back of a six-match winless run which has seen them slip 11 points behind the National League North play-offs and crash out of the FA Trophy.

Clitheroe bounced back from back-to-back Evo-Stik League First Division North defeats by winning 2-1 at home to Bacup Borough last Tuesday to set up tonight’s last-eight encounter.

And Blues boss Simon Garner is hoping they can take advantage of the Magpies’ poor form and move within one victory of an instant return to the home of Bolton Wanderers.

“It’s a big game and one all of the lads are looking forward to,” said Garner, who should have a fully fit squad.

“It’s a repeat of last year’s final and, if we can, we want to beat them and try and get there again.

“They are not on the best of runs and hopefully we can take advantage of that.

“But they have got some very good players, it’s a very good club, and they play two divisions higher than us, so we know it’s not going to be easy.

“But we want to get to the final again and this time try and win it.

“It’s a great incentive just to get there as not too many players will get the chance to play at a stadium as good as the Macron in their careers.”

Chorley suffered their fourth defeat in six games on Saturday after yet another late collapse condemned them to a harsh 3-2 home defeat to North Ferriby United.

But Magpies manager Matt Jansen was highly encouraged by his side’s performance.

And he said of tonight’s clash: “Clitheroe are going to come here, it’ll be their cup final, but if we put a performance in like we did for the first 70 minutes on Saturday, and then follow it through to the 95th or 96th minute, then we should be okay.”

The one remaining second-round tie takes place this evening when Colne welcome Holker Old Boys to the XLCR Stadium. The winners will host Bamber Bridge in the last eight.