Derek's Message: Enjoy It
THE last 12 months have brought many treats to the Green Army, playing in hugely significant fixtures at massive stadia.
Our thrilling play-off win over Portsmouth was a day to savour but the subsequent Wembley loss to AFC Wimbledon a major disappointment.
Now, a trip to Anfield in the Emirates FA Cup this Sunday, playing against the mighty Liverpool in the world’s oldest cup competition ranks alongside the top occasions in Argyle history, but we can be assured of a pragmatic, well-rehearsed approach to preparation from manager Derek Adams.
“We’re obviously looking forward to the game,” he said. “It’s a terrific day for the supporters and everybody associated [with the club]. The players are looking forward to it and we go to Anfield on Sunday with the aim of trying to win the game.
“You’re always learning but we don’t have too many players here now that were at Wembley, probably only three of them were involved on that day.
“We’ll do things exactly the same as Wembley, which was a big day, but I’ve managed in big games before, 60,000 at Celtic Park and the Scottish Cup Final. We’ll prepare things exactly the same way, train here on Saturday morning and travel up in the afternoon.”
A club of Liverpool’s stature will obviously do their homework on Argyle and we can be assured of a thoroughly professional attitude from our hosts on Sunday.
There is, however, one very noisy factor that may come as surprise to the Anfield faithful, with more than 8,500 members of the Green Army trooping to Merseyside in the hope of seeing Argyle pull off something very special.
When the story of this season is written, as is the case every year, the wonderful travelling support from Argyle fans will go down a massive factor in our superb away form in League Two, and this could be the biggest party yet.
“My message to our fans will be to enjoy the day,” said Derek. “We took 35,000 to Wembley and now over 8,000 to Anfield. This is a different day because there’s no pressure on us at Anfield, which could help us, and I’m sure the fans will have a terrific day.
“It gives us a break from league action; we’ve had pressure on us all season, so this is a nice break from the pressure. The fans lift the players on a weekly basis and, when we go away from home but still have the majority of support, it certainly helps.
“When our fans start singing, it can get the players going. It’s a sell-out crowd and the ticket pricing has been very good as well, so a terrific day for everybody. I’ve been to Anfield on a number of occasions and a great venue to play football.
“Every game we play this season, we’re the favourites, which is added pressure. This weekend gives us the opportunity to play in a different way.”