Tranmere Rovers midfielder Connor Jennings expects a tough fixture when Oxford City visit Prenton Park for an Emirates FA Cup first round tie on Saturday.
Micky Mellon’s Rovers take a break from their League Two schedule, where they are currently positioned fourth in the division, as they entertain the Vanarama National League South side who are making the journey up to the Wirral for the first time.
And 27-year-old Jennings is wary of the threat that Rovers’ Non-League opponents could hold at the weekend, in anticipation for the tie.
Jennings said: “It’s going to be a tough game, we’ll have to show them some respect and I’m sure they’ll come out fighting and it will be a big day for them.
“We’ve worked on them, we’ve been in the Conference, they are trying to get into the Conference, so we know about them."
Jennings feels that, like last season, where Rovers took League One side Peterborough United to a replay before bowing out at the first round, a positive FA Cup performance could be used as a platform to inspire a promotion push.
He continued: “It was a good game (versus Peterborough United last season) and obviously it wasn’t the best replay, but the first game we did really well, and we took it into the rest of the season, it gave us belief and confidence.
“It can do (create momentum) but obviously all we want to do is win games, every game we play we try and win, and it’s a good break from the league so it will be a good game on Saturday.”
Jennings is hopeful that Tranmere can go on an Emirates FA Cup run of their own this season and having played in the third round before in his career, when Wrexham travelled for an away tie at then-Premier League side Stoke City in January 2015, with the North Wales team valiantly losing 3-1 on the day.
And now Jennings wants a taste of the third round again but knows Rovers have work on their hands to get their first.
Jennings added: “Obviously that’s the dream (reaching the third round), it’s what the FA Cup is about, you can’t look too far ahead, the first-round is Saturday and it’s not going to be an easy game, it’s going to be a tough game.
“I’ve got some good memories, some not so good, Stoke in the third round was nice, so hopefully we’ll get it this season.”
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