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Folkestone Invicta manager Neil Cugley admits he has selection headache in goal ahead of Isthmian Premier game against Kingstonian


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Neil Cugley plans to consult with his coaching staff at Folkestone over his goalkeeping dilemma.

They return to Isthmian Premier action this Saturday after their FA Cup exploits and manager Cugley has a decision to make about who plays between the sticks against third-placed Kingstonian.

Folkestone's Jordan Wright on the ball during their 3-2 extra-time defeat to Eastleigh. Picture: Randolph File
Folkestone's Jordan Wright on the ball during their 3-2 extra-time defeat to Eastleigh. Picture: Randolph File

Regular first-choice keeper Tim Roberts has been sidelined for just shy of a month with a groin problem but has now told Cugley he is ready to return.

However Alexis Andre Jr has proven to be a more than capable deputy, the 24-year-old making his Folkestone debut in their FA Cup third qualifying round win over National League North Gloucester City last month.

When asked how far away Roberts was from a return, Cugley replied: “He is nearly fit now.

“So I will have another difficult choice with that one, both are excellent keepers.

“Tim is a bit underrated, really. He is a very good goalie.

“I will talk to my player-coach Micheal Everitt and assistant Roland Edge to see what they think. Although I’m the manager, those two have a big say in how we run this club now.

“They are great people to have around. I’m very lucky.”

Cugley’s men go into the match after two enthralling ties against National League Eastleigh.

Folkestone lost 3-2 after extra-time against the full-time side on Tuesday, fighting back despite having defender Josh Vincent sent off, having drawn 3-3 at the Silverlake Stadium last weekend in the original encounter.

Cugley, whose side sit sixth, is hoping for another good crowd after 1,237 watched their match in midweek.

He said: “I said to the players ‘well done’ but they have set their standards now. They have got to try and keep it up.

“Obviously, we have got two massive games in the league now (Folkestone visit Bognor on Tuesday) but they should come back on Saturday with smiles on their faces, proud of what they have achieved and, hopefully, we will get a lot of people coming here for that game.

“I think people are understanding that we haven’t got a bad side. They are a good bunch of lads and all credit to them, and everybody at the club, for the work they have put in.”

Cugley insists he has enough strength-in-depth in his squad.

Asked if he had plans to add to his options, Cugley replied: “No, not really. Obviously, we had a couple of younger lads on the bench but Kieron McCann is coming back.

“We will have a look. The pleasing thing is I believe we have made £15,000 or so out of the FA Cup this season. So we will have a look to see if we need anything else.

“But Kieron is there now, Oliver Freeman is all right, and Tyler Sterling is all right. So I don’t think we are too bad.

“Draycs (Ian Draycott) came on, on Tuesday and he is our leading goal scorer, so I don’t think the squad is too bad.”

Read more: All the latest sports news from Kent

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