'Why not?' - Crawley Town striker eyeing brace against Leeds United in FA Cup 'Golden Boot' bid

CRAWLEY Town striker Tom Nichols is eyeing a brace against Sunday's visitors Leeds United to accrue the recent total needed to win the FA Cup's 'Golden Boot'.
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Nichols is already on three goals for the 2020-21 competition having bagged a hat-trick in the 6-5 thriller at Torquay United that sent Crawley through to the second round.

Having already netted against Premier League sides Liverpool, Chelsea and Brighton in previous season's cup ties, the 27-year-old forward now sees no reason why he cannot add to his tally with the striker even facing questions about being the FA Cup's top scorer.

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Alerted to the fact that five goals was often enough to win the competition's Golden Boot, Nichols quipped: "I'll have to try and score two on Sunday to try and win it.

AMBITION: From Crawley Town striker Tom Nichols. Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images.AMBITION: From Crawley Town striker Tom Nichols. Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images.
AMBITION: From Crawley Town striker Tom Nichols. Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images.

"I'll be giving it a go, I have scored against a couple of Premier League teams so why not?

"They are just another team and I am sure the boys will create me a chance or two so we will see where it goes."

Nichols netted his first goal against a Premier League side for former club Exeter City in a 2-2 draw against Liverpool in the FA Cup third round tie of January 2016 at St James Park.

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The Reds won the Anfield replay 3-0 and Nichols moved to Peterborough United the following month.

The forward struck once more against top-flight opposition as Posh lost 4-1 at Chelsea in the FA Cup third round clash of January 2017 and the striker also netted for next club Bristol Rovers in a 2-1 reverse at home to Brighton in an EFL Cup tie in August 2019.

Nichols added: "I haven't had any giant killings as you were but I have scored against a few of them and I have got good memories of the FA Cup.

"The next step is to try and beat one of them really.

"Leeds' games are very entertaining, they are very end to end and it does create chances the other way which as a forward is good for me.

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"Obviously they are very good players, they are Premier League players, but they attack with a lot of bodies but then again they do defend with a lot of bodies as well.

"They are very fit but they have very entertaining games and I am sure it will be the same again on Sunday."

Asked for his own thoughts on Leeds and memories of the club growing up, Nichols said: "The fan base there speaks for itself, how passionate they are and it's a big, big club.

"They used to be right in amongst the Champions League way back when, when I was younger.

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"But it's a great club and they are now in the Premier League, playing really well and a very exciting team to watch.

"If they are on the box I love watching them, the games are end to end and great for the neutral really.

"They are just high energy and about as high energy as you can get really.

"The positions some of their players find themselves in, you are sat there thinking 'what on Earth is he doing there?'

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"But as quickly as they get up there they are back defending as well so it's not just run anywhere, there's a structure to it.

"There's a lot of chances at both ends which is great as I am forward so I enjoy watching that but they are probably one of the most exciting teams to watch in the Prem."

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Thank you Laura Collins