Buxton FC captain Jamie Ward has highlighted teammate Diego De Girolamo as the key to the Bucks’ progressing to the FA Cup third round.

Ward spoke of the importance of De Girolamo, who was part of an Italy Under-20 side in 2015 which featured the likes of Juventus star Federico Bernardeschi. The Buxton captain explained how De Girolamo could use the occasion to get a move up the leagues.

He said: “On his day he can be anything that he wants and hopefully Saturday is one of those days. It could be a chance for him to shine again and a platform for him to get a move. It’s clear he’s got the ability but it’s about getting it out of him on a regular basis.”

The former Sheffield United and Derby County player Ward gave his thoughts on how this cup run compares to his previous experience of the competition.

He said: “Going through the qualifying rounds it’s been a longer journey to get here than it has in the past but that’s what makes it that much sweeter.”

Ward, who also represented Northern Ireland at Euro 2016 is looking to use his vast experience in professional football to support his teammates on Saturday.

He said: “I would always like to think my experience can help people; I can give a shoulder to lean on but I’m not the only one who has played in the football league. We have Ash Chambers and obviously Diego De Girolamo as well.”

Buxton will play in front of the cameras this Saturday live on BBC 1. The Buck’s media manager Alan Page said: “It’s a big day for the town. It will be a full house, over 3,500 people packed in.”

He added: “Even people who don’t have an interest in football are talking about it, shop owners, pub landlords and every school kid in the area is talking about Saturday.”

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