Lovell excited by Swansea return
Steve Lovell is excited by the chance to return to his former club this weekend, but his affection for Swansea City will have to be put on hold for 90 minutes.
Gillingham manager Lovell was born and raised in Swansea, and made two league appearances for the club during a loan spell in 1987.
Having guided the League One Gills to an upset victory over Cardiff in the third round, the 58-year-old has spoken of his desire to face the Swans in the fourth round.
And he got his wish when his former and current clubs were the first two teams out of the hat for the last-32 stage of the FA Cup.
Saturday's game will bring back fond memories for Lovell, whose father Alan also represented the Swans, having grown up in Dunvant and regularly visited the Vetch to watch his boyhood club.
But those emotions will be kept in check as he looks to plot another cup shock at the Liberty on Saturday.
"I’m very excited because I know what we can produce when we’re at our best," he said.
"This year, we have turned up for the big games, so I’m hoping we can replicate what we’ve done before against Cardiff and Portsmouth and make sure we do ourselves proud.
"Whatever the result, it’s important that we put in a good performance and give everything.
"It’s nice to go back to a club where me and my dad played and had some great times. My mother has always supported them and had season tickets.
"But, as soon as the whistle blows, all those sentiments will go out the window. It’s a game of football and one in which we want to produce a performance.
"For an hour-and-a-half, it will be intense and I will be concentrating on what needs to be done. Maybe afterwards, we can sit down, have a nice meal and talk about the occasion."