Johnny Moore asks Allister Webb from Lynn News to run the rule over the Linnets
Q: What does this tie mean to King’s Lynn Town?
A: It’s probably the club’s biggest game since there were reformed in 2010. There has been much to celebrate in that time, with four promotions and runs to the semi-finals of the FA Vase and the last 16 of the FA Trophy.
It’s 14 years since the Linnets last got this far in the FA Cup and the win over Port Vale in the last round was the first time a King’s Lynn side had beaten Football League opposition in the competition for nearly 60 years.
If anyone connected with King’s Lynn Town needed proof of how far the club has come, this is it.
Q: How heart-breaking is it that such a great occasion will be played at an empty stadium and not generate any gate receipts?
A: We’re all getting far too used to games without fans, but this is the type of occasion where it really hits home.
There would have been a big following making the journey from west Norfolk and it would have made for a great atmosphere, with many making a weekend of it.
The one consolation is the fact the game has been chosen for television broadcast, meaning it’s now worth £46,000 to the club regardless of the result – massively important, even if fans are able to return to The Walks soon.
Q: The side are sitting mid-table in the National League, but are they better than their placing suggests?
A: They’ve certainly got the potential to be. It was always going to take time to adjust to a higher level after successive promotions in the past two seasons and they’ve taken a couple of heavy beatings on their travels at Solihull Moors and Sutton.
But they’ve won their last two, against Barnet and Dover, and kept clean sheets in the process, so they’ll be in good heart for today.
They’ve never been in the National League before, so the aim this season is to stay up and establish themselves.
Q: Which players might pose Pompey a few problems this afternoon?
A: Adam Marriott’s goals spearheaded King’s Lynn’s promotion push in National League North and although he hasn’t featured as much so far this term after an injury in pre-season, he remains a key man for them in attack.
Jamaican international Jamar Loza has been in good form of late, with braces against both Woking and Barnet, while Sonny Carey is a hugely promising young talent in midfield who scored the decisive goal against Port Vale.
The defence has been boosted by the recent signing of Kyle Callan-McFadden, while on-loan Norwich goalkeeper Archie Mair is a highly regarded Scotland under-21 international.
Q: Could an empty stadium work in the side’s favour and how will they approach the contest?
A: They’d love to be playing in front of a big crowd, including plenty of their own fans, but I think an empty ground probably does the Linnets a favour, particularly now they’ve got the experience of travelling to Port Vale and winning in the last round to fall back on.
They like to play out from the back but, given the defensive issues they’ve had recently, I expect they’ll look to stay in the game for as long as they can and take any chances that come their way on the counter-attack.