What Tottenham can expect from Marine in the FA Cup

09 January 2021 07:15

Tottenham face Marine on Sunday evening in the FA Cup third round as they attempt to avoid being on the receiving end of the greatest upset in the competition's history.

The part-time eighth tier Merseyside outfit welcome Jose Mourinho's side to their 3,189-seater Rossett Park home, having played six matches to get to this stage of competition.

So what can Spurs expect from the plucky underdogs?


How do Marine lineup?

Marine enter the field ahead of their second round victory over Havant And Waterlooville | Jan Kruger/Getty Images

In the FA Cup this season, Marine have traditionally lined up in a 4-3-3 formation. 19-year-old Salford City loanee Alex Doyle has operated at the base of a midfield triangle, but is a doubt for the game having been forced off with an ankle injury during Marine's second round win over Havant and Waterlooville.

Doyle has not featured since, but the club are hopeful he will be fit after agreeing an extension to his loan this week.

Club captain Niall Cummins leads the line, and has been flanked by the quick Neil Kengni - a former member of the Rochdale academy - and Momodou Touray on either wing during their previous FA Cup victories. However, Touray will not be involved, having returned to parent club Salford following the conclusion of his loan spell.


Who is Marine's manager?

Marine are managed by Neil Young (not that one). The 45-year-old has previously had spells in charge of Rhyl, Colwyn, Chester, Stockport, Altrincham and Halifax. He recently put pen to paper on a new three-and-a-half-year deal with the club.

It was at Chester - the club Marine eliminated in the fourth qualifying round of this season's FA Cup - where Young enjoyed his greatest success, taking charge in 2010 as they emerged from the ashes of Chester City following the club's winding up order.

Young guided Chester to three successive promotions, winning the Evo-Stik First Division North, Evo-Stik Northern Premier and Conference North, before departing in 2014.


Where are Marine dangerous?

Marine have proved to be a real threat from set pieces during this season's FA Cup run. The Merseyside outfit have netted nine goals across their six FA Cup fixtures this season - six of which have come from dead ball situations.

In midfielder Josh Hmami, Marine boast a real free kick specialist. The Accrington Stanley academy graduate has scored from six direct free kicks this season. Centre back Anthony Miley has also proved a goal scoring threat, with five goals already this term.

Should Marine hold Tottenham to a draw and take their illustrious Premier League opponents to penalties then they'll fancy their chances, having progressed past both Runcorn Linnets in the second qualifying round and Colchester in the first round proper via spot kicks this season.


Which Marine players could catch the eye?

Marine celebrate reaching the third round | Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Marine have a relatively young side, with the average age of the starting XI who got the better of Havant and Waterlooville in the previous round just 24. The midfield trio is particularly young, with James Barrigan the most senior of the three at the age of just 22.

This average age of the side is hauled up by 35-year-old centre half David Raven - a defender who made three first team appearances for Liverpool under Rafael Benitez, represented England at youth level and has substantial experience in the Football League across spells with Tranmere, Shrewsbury and Carlisle.

Speedy forward Neil Kengni was singled out by teammate James Joyce as Marine's star performer this term, and could cause Spurs problems with his directness.

Captain Niall Cummins is regarded as the club's talisman. A proper non-League stalwart, the 27-year-old PE teacher has been branded Marine's "Harry Kane, but without the shooting ability or pace". Renowned for his goal scoring ability in the box, Cummins netted the club's famous winner over Havant and Waterlooville to book their place in the third round. He's also an Arsenal fan.


Source: 90min