WAYNE Goodison has said 1874 Northwich could not have prepared better for an FA Cup clash with Clitheroe but insists the higher-ranked side are favourites.

His side will kick off an extra preliminary round encounter buoyed by collecting maximum points from both North West Counties League matches played to date.

The latest of those, a 3-1 win against former landlords Winsford United, was on Tuesday.

“We go there exactly as we wanted – full of confidence and with a couple of good performances behind us,” said the co-manager.

“It remains a free hit for us too; they play at a higher level, and have home advantage.

“But I think we’ll have given them something to think about after they watched us [against Winsford].

“We won’t change our approach, and we’ll have a good go at them.”

1874 bowed out of the competition in disappointing circumstances last season when they succumbed to Premier Division rivals Burscough in a penalty shoot-out after a replay.

However a run to the third qualifying round the previous year included victories against higher-ranked opponents in the form of Mossley, after a replay, and North Ferriby United.

And after scoring seven goals in two games, they can be confident of causing their Northern Premier League North West Division hosts a problem or two.

Goodison added: “We’re happy with what we’ve seen.

“As a management team it’s always satisfying when you see put into practice things we’ve worked on in training.

“It’s been a priority of ours to be more aggressive in the attacking third, both with and without the ball, and that’s how we got our second goal on Tuesday.

“If we’re greedy, then we might have been further in front.

“However the main thing is we’ve shown an appetite to get at our opponents.

“As we play more often, I’m sure we’ll become more clinical.”

1874 could include Jack Pritchard in the squad after a scan on his injured knee gave a positive result, while versatile midfielder Mark Jones is available again after a suspension.

Lee Jackson is back too.

If this afternoon's game ends in a draw, then a second meeting follows at Barnton's Townfield home on Tuesday, kick-off 7.45pm.