Sheehan Wants More Cup Memories

Josh Sheehan is ready to hit the FA Cup trail again to try and rekindle some memorable moments.

Sheehan was part of a Newport County squad that claimed a string of notable cup scalps during his time in South Wales.

The midfielder featured in the Exiles’ run to the fifth round in 2019 before pushing Premier League champions Manchester City close in pursuit of a quarter-final spot.

And he’s hoping some of that excitement can come to Wanderers as they look to launch a run with victory over League One rivals Barnsley in their first-round meeting at the University of Bolton Stadium on Saturday (KO 2pm).  

“We did well in the FA Cup and I’d like to do that here,” said Sheehan, who ended a successful four-year stint with Newport to join the Whites before the start of last season.

“The fans love it when you get to the third-round draw and you see the names coming out and the big teams with your team in the hat.

“You obviously take it game by game but in the FA Cup you want to get to the third round and get the big boys and enjoy those days.

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“That’s hopefully what we can get to, but we’ve got to try and get Barnsley out the way first.”

Wanderers know they will face a serious test against a Barnsley side that came to the University of Bolton Stadium a fortnight ago to secure a goalless draw.

Ian Evatt’s men were unable to force a breakthrough against the defensive-minded Tykes that day.

But Sheehan insists there will be no change to the Whites’ approach as they look to bounce back from a 3-1 defeat to Oxford United last Saturday as another potential comeback fell short and ended hopes of a hat-trick of league wins.

“We need not to give these teams head starts. It’s shooting ourselves in the foot,” added the Wales international, who made his first league start in almost a year against the U’s following his recovery from injury.

“We got away with it the two weeks before, but we didn’t last Saturday.

“They went and scored (again) and it just went and killed all the momentum from the game.

“We want to put it right on Saturday. We want to perform the best we can and we want to win and get through to the next round.

“There’s no different mindset from us. We always go into every game I feel like we’re going to play our way and we want to win every game.

“Our way will be the same and we’ll play as we do. We’ll see how Barnsley will come to us, whether they’ll play like they did in the league or whether they’ll come and go for it. We’ll see how the game goes on.”

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Wanderers are marking the 100th anniversary of the club’s first FA Cup success at the end of the 1922/23 season by wearing a special centenary kit on Saturday.

The strip is a replica of the one the Whites wore when they beat West Ham United in the first FA Cup final to be played at Wembley.

And the current crop of players are delighted to be sharing a slice of history by re-creating the look against the Tykes.

“We all think it’s really nice. It’s very stylish, obviously retro and from what I’ve seen on social media the fans love it as well,” said Sheehan.

“Hopefully we can have a few games in it and have a little run in it.”

As well as the strip being worn by the team on Saturday, a total of 1,923 replica shirts have been made for fans to buy, each with its own serial number, detailed in a custom label at the bottom, and coming in a special commemorative box.

Centenary shirts are still available to buy in the club shop and online HERE

And Saturday's 32-page matchday programme - available to buy around the stadium - will feature an interview with Josh.

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