Cash-ridden Eastleigh face potential money-spinner
Financial strugglers Eastleigh have a possible wallet bolstering tie against Championship side Barnsley in the third round of the FA Cup.
However, the match is not yet guaranteed, as the Spitfires need to navigate through a replay against Crewe to get safe passage to the next stage of the competition.
The television money from the first match between the pair earned Eastleigh approximately £75,000, and the prize money from progressing to the third round stands at £50,000.
Eastleigh chairman, Kenny Amor, is prematurely looking forward to the off-field benefits that the tie will bring if it happens.
“On top of the prize money, it’s already been confirmed that our game has been selected for overseas broadcast, earning us over £50,000.
“It’s massive for us even if it’s not the draw that most of us would have chosen.”
Despite being seemingly stuck in mid-table obscurity in the National League, Eastleigh more than held their own against League Two high-flyers Crewe in the first match.
The draw against higher level opposition may not deter the Hampshire side however, as the last time they got to the third round, there were some staggering similarities.
In the 2014-15 season, Eastleigh beat Crewe in the first round, then Stourbridge in the second round, the Glassboys being the side that was beaten this season in a round one replay by the Spitfires.
The third round draw that year threw up a tie against then-bottom of the Championship side Bolton.
Strangely, the team at the bottom of the second-tier is Barnsley, the team destined to face the winner of the second round replay.
The replay at Gresty Road will determine who Barnsley will face in the third round.