MAITLAND coach Mick Bolch promised the Magpies "won't die wondering" after drawing A-League club Central Coast Mariners in the round-of-32 in the FFA Cup.
The Magpies are one of three Hunter teams to make the national stage.
Fellow Northern NSW NPL club Edgeworth face a long trek to take on Darwin Olympic.
The Newcastle Jets are also on the road to take on fellow A-League heavyweights Melbourne Victory.
The matches will be held on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between July 23 and August 7.
"The boys wanted to draw an A-League club and we cheered when we got the Mariners," said Bolch, who was with the team for the draw which was televised on Fox Sports. "We have to be realistic. We are a team of part-timers - teachers, electricians and what not - and they are a professional team. We certainly won't die wondering. We back ourselves and will give it everything we have got."
The Magpies, who will be playing on the national stage for the first time, hope to host the Mariners at Maitland Sportsground.
That will require assistance from Maitland council and temporary lighting to achieve the 500 lux required to host a match with an A-League side.
"It would be fantastic to host it at Maitland Sportsground," Bolch said.
"I'm certain Maitland people would be out in full force to support us."
This is the fourth time Edgeworth have made the round of 32. They beat Far North Queensland 3-0 in Cairns in 2016 to be the first NNSW club to progress to the top 16.
They then lost 5-1 to Western Sydney Wanderers at Magic Park.
The Eagles will fancy their chances of taking the next step again despite the long trip. The Jets went down 1-0 to Melbourne City in the round of 16 last year and are yet to beat a fellow A-League club in the tournament.
Meanwhile, the first competitive match of Robbie Fowler's Brisbane Roar reign will be in the FFA Cup against A-League champions Sydney FC.
It will be Fowler's first big challenge at the helm of the new-look Roar who have shipped out 16 players following their disastrous 2018-19 A-League campaign.
In the other clash between two A-League sides, Perth Glory will host Western Sydney Wanderers.
Defending champions Adelaide United have been drawn against former NSL club Melbourne Knights in one of the four clashes between A-League clubs and lower-tier opponents.
Campbelltown City will welcome Melbourne City while ex-NSL club Brisbane Strikers host Wellington Phoenix.
Queensland amateurs Coomera Colts will travel to the Whitsundays to face Queensland NPL team Magpies Crusaders FC in one of eight ties between lower-tier clubs.
Both teams are playing in the round of 32 for the first time.
Other clubs making their debut in this stage of the competition include Adelaide Olympic, FC Bulleen Lions, Moreland Zebras, Mount Druitt Town Rangers, St George FC and Canberra-based Tigers FC.
The 16 matches will be held over three weeks across three match nights (either Tuesdays or Wednesdays), with between four to six matches per night beginning in the week of July 23.
FFA CUP ROUND OF 32 FIXTURES (home team first)
Sydney FC v Brisbane Roar
Perth Glory v Western Sydney Wanderers
Melbourne Victory v Newcastle Jets
Tigers FC v Hume City
South Hobart v Marconi Stallions
Adelaide Olympic v Floreat Athena
Magpies Crusaders FC v Coomera Colts
Olympic FC v Bayswater City
St George v Sydney United
Darwin Olympic v Edgeworth Eagles
FC Bulleen Lions v Moreland Zebras
Mt Druitt Town Rangers v Manly United
Maitland FC v Central Coast Mariners
Melbourne Knights v Adelaide United
Campbelltown City v Melbourne City
Brisbane Strikers v Wellington Phoenix.