Published: 05:00, 24 November 2021
| Updated: 08:11, 24 November 2021
Keith McMahon says Whitstable are excited ahead of tonight’s Kent Senior Cup final against Dartford - even if his own focus remains firmly on league matters.
The Oystermen, second-bottom of the Isthmian South East table, will be big underdogs when they face National League South frontrunners Dartford in the final of the competition which has been held over from the 2019/20 season.
Whitstable boss McMahon, whose team earned a first away victory of the season on Saturday as they beat Hythe 3-0, took charge at the Belmont last month, overseeing a 1-0 win against a Gillingham side in their semi-final in his first match in charge which came courtesy of a late Tom Carlton goal.
Ahead of the clash at Princes Park, he said: “It’s great for the club.
“I said after the game on Saturday that my focus is on this Saturday (when Whitstable visit Whitehawk). But the cup final is a massive thing for the club and the committee.
“I know we are huge underdogs but, hopefully, we can give Dartford a game.
“The supporters are brilliant at Whitstable. I have never known anything like it.
“Hopefully we bring a few with us.”
McMahon has been doing his homework on Steve King’s side who won 3-2 at Hemel Hempstead last weekend through a brace from Tyrique Hyde and one from Ade Azeez.
Whitstable, meanwhile, beat Hythe through efforts from Luke Illsley, Alex Gaggin and Danny Walder.
When asked if he knew much about the Darts, McMahon replied: “Yeah, I do.
“I know Tony Burnham (club director and former manager) really well. We have a lot of information on them.
“I’m not sure they will use their first 11 but they will probably use their first-team squad because they'll want to win the competition themselves.
“They are top of their league, a couple of levels above, so it will be tough.
“But it’s a one-off game. If we set up well, we have players that can threaten them. But we will all need to be at it.
“If you are not up for a cup final, then you are not going to get up for any game.”
Whitstable will be without defender Ollie Gray who dislocated his shoulder at Reachfields at the weekend, while Jack Miles is doubtful with a recurring hamstring injury.