PROUD Andy Preece is backing his young Worcester City charges to capture glory and oust Accrington Stanley in tonight's FA Cup fourth qualifying round replay (7.45).

City deservedly secured a return to St George's Lane following a battling 1-1 draw with Conference high-flyers Stanley in Lancashire on Saturday.

Despite falling behind to Gary Roberts' stunning 30-yard free-kick, Worcester showed guts and courage to equalise at the Interlink Express Stadium through striker Leon Kelly's close-range tap-in.

Player-manager Preece described his side's performance as "absolutely magnificent" and gave special praise to City's three young midfielders.

Skipper Graham Hyde was absent after his wife gave birth in the early hours of Saturday morning, but Danny Hodnett, Tom Warmer and Sam Wedgbury worked tirelessly in the engine-room.

Tonight's winners face a first round proper showdown at Southern Premier Division side Chippenham Town and Preece insists City can progress.

"We want to go and win the game," said Preece. "We want to get through and we will be as positive as we can. We'll go out with a game-plan again and if the lads perform as well as they did on Saturday, then there's a chance we can get a result.

"I thought the lads were absolutely magnificent. In midfield, we've got a 16-year-old playing his second game, 19-year-old Tom who has just come back from a virus and Danny Hodnett, who is not a midfielder, playing out of position.

"Sometimes, I think our situation gets forgotten. When people saw the teamsheet, I'm sure some supporters might have thought we did not have a chance. We are down to the bare bones and those lads deserve the biggest pat on the back."

Hyde returns for the replay, but Liam McDonald is a doubt after limping off with an ankle injury. Young left-back Dale Watkins is on stand-by to make his debut.

Preece has called on the Worcester public to turn out in force for the club's biggest game of the season. He added: "It's a good occasion for us. We'll just see how big a club Worcester City is by how many turn up tonight.

"We've had three magnificent performances on the trot and we need a positive response from the people of Worcester to come out and support us. With the players we've had out, these young kids have gone through brick walls for the team."

Preece added: "I'm not thinking about Chippenham because we've got to get through. If you don't get through, there's no point looking at the next round. As far as I'm concerned, it's about trying to beat Accrington and if we beat them, we'll take that step."