BLACK HORSE will be chasing six league and county trophies this season but player-manager Ricardo Richards says they would happily trade them all for winning just one – and become the best Sunday side in England.
The reigning Bromsgrove Sunday League champions, who won the title with 20 wins from 20 fixtures, began their quest for the national FA Sunday Cup by dumping out one of Birmingham’s top teams, Digby Rangers.
Digby are so strong they prompted a mass exodus from the Coronation League Premier Division, leaving it with just four teams, because they kept hammering their opponents by double-figure scores.
However, Black Horse edged them out 2-1 at Studley’s ground thanks to Odane Barnes’ 88th-minute winner.
Black Horse will now be at home to Leicester outfit Anstey Sports Bar or Nottingham side Phoenix Gedling in the second round in November.
Having twice been knocked out at the quarter-final stage – last year to eventual winners Aylesbury Flooring after leading 3-1 with 20 minutes left – Richards says the pain of disappointment will fire their challenge this season.
“Every competition we enter, we enter to win it,” said Richards. “With the Worcestershire Sunday Cup, the Birmingham Sunday Cup, the Bromsgrove League and their cups, plus the national cup we are going for seven trophies.
“But I would trade it all to win the national cup. Every Sunday team in England wants it and it’s the hardest cup to win.
“It was a really big challenge against Digby. You just look at the players they’ve got. There was a piece in the Sunday Mercury about the fact nobody wanted to play them because they were so good.
“It was showdown time and we played them off the park. They didn’t create a chance – their goal was a dubious penalty – and even when it was 1-1 with a few minutes left I always fancied we’d get through.”
Barnes had opened the scoring by slotting home after Richards back-heeled the ball into his path and Barnes fired home the winner with a smart half-volley.
“Odane took his goals really well but we had a lot of excellent performances,” said Richards. “Joe Cole at centre-back was outstanding and Lewis Clarke and Aldin Kahriman were superb in midfield.”
Unbeaten Black Horse sit top of the Bromsgrove League Premier Division ahead of Sunday’s home game against Rubery Athletico.