HEREFORD captain Jared Hodgkiss hopes it is third time lucky when his Bulls side face Hornchurch on Saturday.

The 34-year-old defender started his youth career at West Bromwich Albion when he visited Wembley on two occasions losing both finals.

“I’ve been a couple of times with West Bromwich Albion when I was younger aged 20 or 21,” said Hodgkiss.

“Obviously it’s a great stadium and stuff but we need to try and block that out really.

“It’s still a football pitch and round football that we’re going to use. It’s still 11 versus 11 so hopefully if the players can just play the game then that will happen and we can give a good account of ourselves.

“I haven’t had success there, but I’m hoping third time lucky.

“I’m 34 now, you don’t take any game for granted anyway let alone being able to play at Wembley and captain the team as well.

“I’m really excited, we’re well prepared and I just can’t wait.”

Hodgkiss signed for the Bulls during the last two seasons during which he has played under three different permanent managers and seen both league campaigns curtailed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“It’s been topsy-turvy I tell you but this is what I’ve come to Hereford for to try and win something and be successful so hopefully we can do that on Saturday,” added Hodgkiss.

“You never know in football what is around the corner but also in life in general as well so we’re just grateful that we’ve been able to maintain some normality during this pandemic.

“Hopefully we can top it off on Saturday with a good win.

In his first season had Hereford the Bulls conceded 56 goals in 35 league games before the season was curtailed.

However, this season the Bulls are on an unbeaten run of 11 matches in all competition leading to the FA Trophy final.

“You’ve got to give credit to the gaffer as well but confidence is a massive thing in football,” added Hodgkiss.

“You have to get good relationships with your team-mates and the gaffer has drilled a lot of defensive work into us and that helps as well.

“He’s (Josh Gowling) is going to give us little pointers of how to defend especially for (Luke) Haines and Lewis (Butroid) who are younger lads.

“He gives them pointers on how he wants us to defend but we also like to defend from the front as we like to press the ball when we can when it’s the right opportunity so that sometimes helps us out and we don’t have to defend as much as we had to last season.

“We’ve done quite well but another clean sheet on Saturday would be great.”