The Isuzu FA Vase

'Make it an afternoon to remember' says Sholing boss

Friday 09 May 2014
Sholing boss Dave Diaper

Sholing boss Dave Diaper says his dream will come true on Saturday when he leads his Sholing team out for The FA Carlsberg Vase Final.

Diaper, who has already guided the Hampshire outfit to the Wessex League Premier Division title this season, can't wait for Sholing's chance under the Arch.

And, having already been to Wembley this season to watch The FA Trophy Final, he's now looking to go one better than his friend Alex Pike, whose Gosport Borough side lost to Cambridge United in March.

Sholing v West Auckland Town

The FA Carlsberg Vase
The Final
Saturday 10 May 2014
Wembley Stadium connected by EE

"It’s every schoolboy’s dream to play at Wembley and it’s every manager’s dream to lead a side out there and I’m no different," said Diaper, who doubles up as the club's chairman.

"I’m a hugely patriotic person and I believe that Wembley truly is the home of football. It’s going to be a great honour.

"I was in the Royal Box for The FA Trophy Final to watch Gosport play and I loved every minute," he revealed.

"The fact that Gosport got to that Final and that we’ve followed them means that it has been a fantastic year for Hampshire football and that makes me extremely proud.

"Alex Pike is a good friend of mine, so for us both to get there in the same season is incredible."

Diaper's love for Wembley stretches back to 1976 when he was also at The FA Cup Final - a day he'll never forget.

Dave Diaper, Sholing boss

Dave Diaper can't wait to lead Sholing out at Wembley

That year Southampton lifted The Cup beating Manchester United 1-0 thanks to Bobby Stokes' 83rd-minute winner for the Second Division side.

And now he hopes his Sholing team can give the travelling support "an afternoon to remember" in the capital.

"I love my county and I love my town," he added. "I was in the stands at Wembley when Saints won The FA Cup in 1976 and I can still remember everything about that day.

"When Saints reached The Final, I think it was Mick Channon who said that all the club had to do now was ‘to win the… thing’.

"Our thinking is exactly the same – we want to give everyone an afternoon to remember."

You can read the full interview with Dave in the official matchday programme. Tickets are still available for the game, click here to get yours...

By Jamie Bradbury FA Editor