Cup magic is revived for Senior

Dorset Echo: CUP FEVER: Trevor Senior CUP FEVER: Trevor Senior

TRY telling Trevor Senior there’s no magic in the FA Cup.

As a young striker in 1981, Senior fired a hat-trick alongside Tony Chutter’s effort to help Dorchester win 4-0 in a replay at Minehead, sending the club into the second round proper for only the third time in their history.

More than three decades on, the 50-year-old had the thrill of the competition brought back to him in earnest when Dorchester’s class of 2012/13 despatched League Two Plymouth 1-0 in front of the ESPN cameras last Sunday, ending the Magpies’ 31-year wait for FA Cup second-round football.

And the former Reading striker, now boss at Toolstation Western League Bridport, admitted it was a special afternoon at the rain-lashed Avenue Stadium.

“It was probably the first time since I’ve packed in playing that I’ve actually missed it,” said Senior, who watched the game alongside former team-mate Chutter.

“The buzz of the FA Cup with the non-League club taking on the League club brought all the memories back, and they were great scenes at the end.

“I was pretty envious seeing the players enjoying the adulation they got on the pitch and the coverage they got in the media.

“Without being disrespectful to Plymouth I was disappointed with them, but a lot of that was down to how Dorchester played.

“I was watching the sides warm up and both did a keep-ball session, and I said to Chutts that Dorchester looked better than Plymouth, and they carried that into the game.

“They hardly gave the ball away and everyone was up for it.”

Senior admits there are comparisons to be made between the side he experienced cup success with and the current incumbent.

“When I played we had a lot of players from the local area and one or two who had played at league level like Keith Miller (at West Ham),” he said.

“We had a great team spirit, were very workmanlike and we didn't think we were going to get beaten.

“The players are probably more technically gifted now but they have obviously got a good spirit themselves.

“Sometimes getting in loan players can work against you but the players they have brought in seem good lads who want to work hard.”

The Blue Square South outfit will face a trip to Luton or Nuneaton in round two, depending on the outcome of the teams' replay on Tuesday, and Senior believes his old team have a good opportunity to progress against either side.

“If they play like they did on Sunday then you have got to give them a chance, there's no pressure on them this time,” he said.

“If they can get a draw at Luton or Nuneaton and take them back to the Avenue then they will fancy their chances.”

“Without being disrespectful to Plymouth I was disappointed with them, but a lot of that was down to how Dorchester played.

“I was watching the sides warm up and both did a keep-ball session, and I said to Chutts that Dorchester looked better than Plymouth, and they carried that into the game.

“They hardly gave the ball away and everyone was up for it.”

Senior admits there are comparisons to be made between the side he experienced cup success with and the current incumbent.

“When I played we had a lot of players from the local area and one or two who had played at league level like Keith Miller (at West Ham),” he said.

“We had a great team spirit, were very workmanlike and we didn’t think we were going to get beaten.

“The players are probably more technically gifted now but they have obviously got a good spirit themselves.

“Sometimes getting in loan players can work against you but the players they have brought in seem good lads who want to work hard.”

The Blue Square Bet South outfit will face a trip to Luton or Nuneaton in round two, depending on the outcome of the teams’ replay on Tuesday, and Senior believes his old team have a good opportunity to progress against either side.

“If they play like they did on Sunday then you have got to give them a chance, there’s no pressure on them this time,” he said.

“If they can get a draw at Luton or Nuneaton and take them back to the Avenue then they will fancy their chances.”

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