WORCESTERSHIRE footballer Matt Smith is dreaming of another FA Cup giant-killing act when his Oldham Athletic side face Premier League high-fliers Everton tomorrow.
The 6ft 6ins striker grabbed national headlines last month after his two-goal salvo knocked the Toffees’ Merseyside neighbours Liverpool out of the competition.
Although Smith, who two years ago was playing for Littleton in the Midland Combination, has not played since that victory due to a shoulder injury, he has declared himself fit and raring to go.
With the match being screened live on ITV (6pm), the 23-year-old is determined to be involved for the League One Latics.
He said: “It’s another massive game, both for me personally and for the club.
“We deserve to be where we are.
“It’s been a long time since the club got to the fifth round so it’s important we don’t let it pass us by.
“We want to enjoy the occasion but we want to play the game and not the occasion.”
Smith added: “Maybe we were guilty of that at Anfield last season (lost 5-1 to Liverpool in the FA Cup) whereas this year we battled against them and did extremely well and we must do that again.
“There will be millions of viewers watching on TV and we are all very excited about it.
“We know what’s at stake and to get into the last eight would be unbelievable.”
Smith, who also played for Redditch United under current Worcester City assistant manager Matt Gardiner before his move into the professional game, continued: “It’s taken a couple of weeks to get the strength back in my shoulder because it was weak due to the trauma.
“It’s not a leg injury so I have been running about and keeping fit but not been able to do any contact.
“I am back in training and looking to fight for my place for the weekend. I will be fit and available for selection.”
Oldham, who last reached this stage of the competition during the 1993-94 season, come into the match struggling in League One and under the temporary charge of Tony Philliskirk having parted company with manager Paul Dickov.
But they will be fired up to tackle David Moyes’ Everton and Smith’s father Ian, a GP in Evesham, can’t wait for the encounter.
He said: “I wouldn’t miss it for anything.
“Having had the great win over Liverpool, it’s one of those matches where there is nothing for us to lose.
“You always hope lightning strikes twice and they can do the same to Everton that they did to Liverpool.”