Pond’s eyes on prize – a bigger one than Pool

FA Cup 3rd round tie between Fleetwood Town and Blackpool FC. Fleetwood's Nathan Pond puts in a timely clearance from Matt Phillips. PIC BY ROB LOCK 07-01-12

FA Cup 3rd round tie between Fleetwood Town and Blackpool FC. Fleetwood's Nathan Pond puts in a timely clearance from Matt Phillips. PIC BY ROB LOCK 07-01-12

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Club stalwart Nathan Pond is keen to reach the third round of the FA Cup for only the second time in his 14-year stint at Fleetwood – and if they can get past Shrewsbury Pond wants a bigger club than Blackpool!

The last time Town reached the third round was back in their 2011-12 Conference promotion season, when they hosted fellow Fylde coast side Blackpool.

Town had future England striker and Leicester Premier League striker Jamie Vardy banging in the goals back then, while Blackpool were three divisions above them.

The Seasiders won 5-1, with Vardy finding the net for Town. Pond was on the losing side that day along with Junior Brown, who could feature for the Shrews tomorrow.

How times have changed, with Fleetwood now a level above the Seasiders.

And Prestonian Pond could not resist a tongue-in-cheek dig at their near neighbours when he expressed the wish for Town to get the job done at Shrewsbury tomorrow and then draw a big side.

He said: “In my 14 years at Fleetwood I’ve been in the third round once and that was against Blackpool but I want to play a big club, a Premier League club.

“The next game is always the biggest game, especially with the rewards of the Championship and Premier League sides coming in.

“Hopefully we can get the job done and then it is the luck of the draw. The Etihad (Manchester City) would do me!

“I’m sure it would be a good experience but it could be a nightmare too!”

But like Fleetwood head coach Uwe Rosler, Pond is expecting Shrewsbury to be gunning for revenge after last week’s 3-0 Highbury humbling.

Pond is also looking forward to locking horns with his ex-manager Paul Hurst, who was in charge of Grimsby during the defender’s half-season on loan there in 2012.

The Town stalwart added: “It is going to be a tough game.They are going to be out for revenge because we beat them 3-0.

“The way they started well the other week and were good for the first 10-15 minutes of each half. They went direct and put us under a lot of pressure. I think it is going to be like that for 90 minutes this weekend. We just need to stand up to the challenge and try to play our own game.”