BROMSGROVE is Worcester City’s preferred venue for a first competitive derby with Raiders – and manager Ashley Vincent wants the tie to focus minds on a homecoming.

The Smedley Crooke Memorial Cup has thrown together homeless giants City and upwardly mobile Raiders in a tantalising first-round showdown which needs to played by November 16.

City’s groundshare deal at the Victoria Ground, home of Bromsgrove Sporting, is on a pay-per-match basis with club bosses deciding to concede home advantage for regional cup ties last season to keep down costs.

But with bragging rights at stake, top brass are not inclined to surrender the home advantage handed to City in the draw.

“Nothing has been confirmed but our first choice would be to play at Bromsgrove, that’s what we’re aiming for,” said City chairman Steve Goode.

“I will be speaking to the (Sporting) chairman to see if we can come to an arrangement, I know we have a contract but I get on well with Mike (Burke). Hopefully we can get a bit off (the rental cost).

“I think the normal crowd will come and a lot of Raiders fans are Worcester (City) fans in any case.

“I understand people might want to see it played in Worcester but we will take into account the views of the manager and make every effort to play it at Bromsgrove.

“If we can’t then we will speak to Raiders, there are other options available to us but for this one we would ideally play on our usual pitch.

“The final decision hasn’t been made yet, though. There are a lot of different opinions which we will take into account and there are still people to speak to. There is plenty of time to get the game in.”

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Vincent also made clear his desire to host the tie at Bromsgrove.

“The powers that be know my preference, it is our home ground and we have been drawn at home,” he said.

“I don’t have any problem with playing anywhere with my side because I believe in them. I think about football as being 11-v-11 on a pitch but for me, we should play at our base.

“If that happens it will be a nice venue for Raiders to play at. I assume they don’t generally play at places like Bromsgrove so it should be a great day all round for the people of Worcester.

“Whether you are a City fan, a Raiders fan, a City fan that has crossed over to Raiders or a Raiders fan that would love to see us back in the city, you have the whole nine yards.

“I know it is outside the city and people might say ‘shouldn’t we play that Worcester?’ For me, no, because at the moment we play in Bromsgrove.

“It is another one for the people of Worcester to be saying the club shouldn’t be playing in Bromsgrove, we want them back down here.

“It should be a city derby where people only have to travel two minutes around the corner but we cannot do that at the moment because people aren’t letting us.

“This football club deserves a base in the city. Of course we are very grateful to Bromsgrove but when ties like this come my first thoughts are that the powers that be, the decision makers away from the club, should be helping to get Worcester City back home.

“This should be a big game for everyone in the city to enjoy.”

City's voluntary relegation in 2017 added to a league title triumph for Raiders last season sees the rivals separated by just one level.

Pride was the only thing at stake in past friendlies at Claines Lane and this will be the first meeting of two Worcester clubs in senior Saturday football but Vincent reckons City will be well prepared for Raiders relishing the prospect of an upset.

“It is like that every week,” said Vincent.

“Most matches are thankless tasks for us at this level, that’s not arrogance but the truth of the matter.

“Especially here (Bromsgrove), everyone raises their game 15 per cent. You don’t get what you see here when you watch teams play elsewhere against each other. I have been out, seen it and know that.

“Beating us is a big scalp and this will be no different so I would say nothing different about Raiders than I would about any other club that comes to play us.

“I am sure they will be bang up for it but my boys will be as well. We want to win games, the more you do that the more prizes you win.

“They can be as up for it as they want, we have to match that and show our quality. If that happens it will be a fantastic game.”