MALVERN Town return to football action tomorrow when they make the trip to Atherstone Town for their Buildbase FA Vase second-round tie (3pm kick-off).

Town will be looking to avenge the 0-10 mauling they endured against the same opposition in last season's third round replay.

Malvern had a large number of players out either injured or suspended that day and even chairman Chris Pinder had to step in and play in goal for the last half an hour on what was a memorable match for all the wrong reasons.

Co-manager Lee Hooper admits the wounds from that day are still fresh but is confident of a different result on Saturday, in what will be Town's first match in a month.

“Obviously we all know what happened the last time we went to Atherstone," he said.

"The lads that played in that game and those six or seven that were ruled out felt the pain and I am sure that it still hurts 12 months on.

“We know what we need to do to put it right and I am confident that we can go there and do a job."

Due to Atherstone being in a tier three area, the match will be played behind closed doors and Hooper admits it's a shame for both clubs.

“Obviously it’s really disappointing that fans aren’t allowed to attend.

" Both clubs have good, passionate followings which would have created a great atmosphere so it’s a shame that they won’t be able to be at the game.

“I gather that there’s a good chance there will be a live stream of the game and Andy Poole’s social media updates are second-to-none so hopefully that will keep everyone right up-to-date.

“Both Dene and I as well as the players will miss the backing that we get from our travelling faithful but we will be doing all we can to give you something to cheer about and be proud of.”

“It’s going to be a tough test, there’s no getting away from that.

"From experience we know that it will be soft underfoot and there’s a testing slope on the pitch.

"We’ve done all of our research but in the main we will concentrate on our game plan and if we can reach the standards that I know we are capable of, we will give ourselves every chance of getting through."

During the month-long national lockdown, Hooper has missed football and is just happy for it's return this weekend.

“We are all itching to get back at it,” he said.

“Everyone involved with the club wants things back to normal again; for me personally it has been very strange not to have football at this time of the year but it’s nice to have those pre-match butterflies back.

“A lot of time and thought went into the training programmes that the lads have been given during November and hopefully we will see the benefits of this on Saturday.

"Laura [Whitehead, Sports Therapist]and Bruce [McLaren, Strength & Conditioning Coach] have been great in setting team and individual programmes for everyone to work on and it will be a massive help in our preparations."