AFTER their first meeting, manager Tom Austin isn’t sure that his FC Clacton side should go into tonight’s FA Cup replay with Witham Town ranked as the underdogs.

The winner of the replay will earn a place in the first qualifying round when they will travel to Stamford AFC.

Ahead of the initial preliminary round tie at Clacton, Austin had said that his players would relish being underdogs against a side playing their league football a level above them.

However, the way they dominated the first encounter – that ended in a 1-1 draw – and created more than enough chances to have won it comfortably, left Austin questioning who the favourites would be for the replay on Tuesday.

He said: “If you were a betting person, would you place them much more as favourites against us for the replay?

“I don’t know after watching that first game.

“People will look at the result and say ‘well done Clacton for getting the draw’ because they are a step four team and we’re step five, but I don’t think that showed.”

The main frustration for Austin in that game was that his team were unable to finish off more of the chances they created.

Mehki McKenzie’s headed first-half goal was the only success they had in breaching the Witham defence, so the Seasiders boss is hoping to see a more clinical edge at the Simarco Stadium.

He added: “On that display, seven or eight of my lads showed they could easily play in the league above.

“They just have to work on concentration for 90 minutes, making the right decisions in the right areas and being a bit more clinical.

“I lost count of how many chances we had in that first game and we’ll really knuckle down in training and work on that.

“Whether it was final ball, final shot or final cross, something was missing and that was frustrating.

“We went in at half-time knowing that we should have been 3-1 up and I knew we had to score in the second half when we were so on top.

“We kept using the ball well and they had to sacrifice their formation in the end to match us up.

“That’s another complement for us.

“We have some good players and they just need to realise that themselves and take responsibility for putting the ball in the back of the net or on a plate for someone.

“It’s close to coming and it really was a positive for us.

“I’m so confident that we can go into the replay and cause the upset.

“They will be the home side from the league above and all the pressure will be on them; we’ll be there to cause a massive upset and that will be great for the club.”

Clacton come into Tuesday's FA Cup replay on the back of two further strong knockout displays.

Since their draw with Witham, they have beaten Little Oakley 2-0 in the first round of the Tolleshunt D'Arcy Cup last week and then Southend Manor 3-0 in the FA Vase's first qualifying round on Saturday.