London (AFP) – Boreham Wood manager Luke Garrard wants to stun Everton in the FA Cup on Thursday, but if the non-league side cannot cause an upset he will settle for going home with Frank Lampard’s shirt.
National League club Boreham Wood head to Goodison Park for a fifth round date with Lampard’s Everton dreaming of causing one of the greatest FA Cup shocks.
Garrard’s team have already beaten third tier AFC Wimbledon and second tier Bournemouth in this season’s tournament.
Many lower-league managers stop their players exchanging shirts with Premier League sides, claiming it shows the opposition too much respect.
But Garrard is a huge admirer of Lampard and will seize the chance to get his hands on some memorabilia from the former Chelsea and England midfielder.
“I’m taking Frank Lampard’s shirt off his back! His zippy, his ball. I’m getting everything,” Garrard said on Wednesday.
“Seriously, though. This isn’t too much respect. We’ve done our analysis on them. So the respect’s there. Hugely. I’m not foolish in any way, shape, or form. They are unbelievable, absolutely unbelievable.
“These are international players playing week in week out the highest level. So trust me, there’s a huge respect.
“But we go there with a purpose, we go there with a job. And if we can implement our game plan, we will cause them problems.
“Through this cup run we’ve been lucky. It’s been really simple, working hard and working together as a team and riding our luck. And if we can do that on Thursday night, we have a chance.”
Garrard revealed Lampard sent him his congratulations after they sealed their trip to Everton by beating Bournemouth.
“He texted me after the Bournemouth game and I think he’s a class individual,” he said.
“Just to have the luxury of five minutes with him before the match or potentially an hour afterwards, I’m really looking forward to it.
“We can all talk about his playing career, which is amazing: Champions League winner, what he achieved with England, and obviously his managerial career, but to do what he did for me was incredible and shows you the measure of the man.”
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