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March 7, 2012

2011-12 FA Cup, Sixth Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup,Football Stadia — admin @ 9:27 pm

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2011-12 FA Cup Sixth Round



FA Cup – results, fixtures, articles (bbc.co.uk/FA Cup).

Saturday 17 March 2012 – Everton v. Sunderland -
Everton Football Club, est. 1878 (as St. Domingo’s FC). ‘The Toffees’ ; ‘The Blues’.
Goodison Park, Liverpool, Merseyside.
Opened 1892. Capacity 40,157. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 33,100 (down -8.2% from 2010-11).
Everton FC are a Premier League club, with 109 seasons in the English 1st Level [most of any club] (and, currently, 58 consecutive seasons in the English First Division/Premier League).
Everton FC Honors:
9 English titles (last in 1987).
5 FA Cup titles (last in 1995).
1 UEFA European Cup Winners’ Cup title (in 1985).
everton-fc_goodison-park_b.gif
Photo credit above – football-wallpapers.org/category/stadium-wallpapers.

Sunderland Association Football Club, est. 1879 (as Sunderland and District Teachers AFC). ‘The Black Cats’ ; ‘Mackems’.
Stadium of Light, Sunderland, Tyne and Wear.
Opened 1997. Capacity 49,000. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 38,461 (down -3.9% from 2010-11).
Sunderland AFC are a Premier League club, with 81 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 4 consecutive seasons in the Premier League).
Sunderland AFC Honors:
6 English titles (last in 1936).
2 FA Cup titles (last in 1973).
sunderland-afc_stadium-of-light_.gif
Image credit above – bing.com/maps/Bird’s Eye satellite view.

Saturday 17 March 2012 – Tottenham v. Bolton -
Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, est. 1882 (as Hotspur FC). ‘Spurs’.
White Hart Lane, Tottenham, north London N17.
Opened 1899. Capacity 36,230. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012): 36,069 (up +1.0% from 2010-11).
Tottenham Hotspur FC are a Premier League club, with 71 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 34 consecutive seasons in the English First Division/Premier League).
Tottenham Hotspur FC Honors:
2 English titles (last in 1961).
8 FA Cup titles (last in 1991).
4 League Cup titles (last in 2008).
2 UEFA Cup titles (last in 1984).
tottenham-hotspur_white-hart-lane_photo-by-tom-shaw_c.gif
Photo credit above – Tom Shaw/Getty Images Europe via zimbio.com.

Bolton Wanderers Football Club, est. 1874 (as Christ Church FC). ‘The Trotters’.
Reebok Stadium, Horwich, Borough of Bolton, Greater Manchester.
Opened 1997. Capacity 28,101. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 23,532 (up +2.8% from 2010-11).
Bolton Wanderers FC are a Premier League club, with 73 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 13 consecutive seasons in the Premier League).
Bolton Wanderers FC Honors:
4 FA Cup titles (last in 1958).
bolton-wanderers_reebok-stadium_photo-by-ed-okeeffe_c.gif
Photo credit above – Ed O’Keeffe Photography at edwud.com.

Sunday, 18 March 2012 – Chelsea v. Leicester City -
Chelsea Football Club, est. 1905. ‘The Blues’.
Stamford Bridge, Fulham, west London SW6.
Opened 1877. Capacity 41,837. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 41,591 (up +0.3% from 2010-11).
Chelsea FC are a Premier League club, with 77 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 23 consecutive seasons in the English First Division/Premier League).
Chelsea FC Honors:
4 English titles (last in 2010).
6 FA Cup titles (last in 2010).
4 League Cup titles (last in 2007).
2 UEFA European Cup Winners’ Cup titles (last in 1998).
chelsea_fc_stamford-bridge_photo-by-tom-shaw_b.gif
Photo credit above – Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images Europe via zimbio.com.

Leicester City Football Club, est. 1884 (as Leicester Fosse FC). ‘The Foxes’ ; ‘The Blues’.
King Power Stadium [formerly Walker's Stadium], Leicester, Leicestershire, East Midlands.
Opened 2002. Capacity 32,262. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 23,326 (down -1.5% from 2010-11).
Leicester City FC are a 2nd Level/Football League Championship club (LCFC have spent 46 seasons in the 1st Level [last in 2003-04], and 60 seasons in the 2nd Level [3rd consecutive season]).
Leicester City FC Honors:
3 League Cup titles (last in 2000).
leicester-city_king-power-stadium_c.gif
Image credit above – flyheli.co.uk/experiences/detail/leicester_city_skyline_tour/.

Sunday, 18 March 2012 – Liverpool v. Stoke City -
Liverpool Football Club, est. 1892. ‘The Reds’.
Anfield, Liverpool, Merseyside.
Opened 1884. Capacity 45,522. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 44,819 (up +4.6% from 2010-11).
Liverpool FC are a Premier League club, with 97 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 50 consecutive seasons in the English First Division/Premier League).
Liverpool FC Honors:
18 English titles (last in 1990).
7 FA Cup titles (last in 2006).
8 League Cup titles (last in 2012).
5 UEFA European titles (last in 2005).
3 UEFA Cup titles (last in 2001).
liverpool-fc_anfield_photo-by-simon-kirwan_b.gif
Photo credit above – Simon Kirwan/lightboxphotography.com.

Stoke City Football Club, est. 1863 (as Stoke Ramblers FC). ‘The Potters’.
Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire.
Opened 2002. Capacity 27,598. Current average attendance {home league matches, inclusive to 7 March 2012}: 27,211 (up +1.3% from 2010-11).
Stoke City are a Premier League club, with 56 seasons in the English 1st Level (and, currently, 4 consecutive seasons in the Premier League).
Stoke City FC Honors:
1 League Cup title (in 1975).
stoke-city_britannia-stadium_.gif
Image credit above – bing.com/maps/Bird’s Eye satellite view

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Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup‘.
Thanks to the FA.com, for the photo of the FA Cup trophy.
Thanks to soccernet.espn.go.com for current attendance figures [7 March 2012].

February 17, 2012

2011-12 FA Cup, Fifth Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup — admin @ 1:35 pm

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2011-12 FA Cup, Fifth Round


FA Cup – results, fixtures, articles (bbc.co.uk/FA Cup).

[Note: the text and the link below were added 1 day after this post was originally posted.]
FA Cup 5th Round upsets, from Saturday 18 Feb. 2012 -
Norwich City 1-2 Leicester City…25 places and 1 league separate Leicester City (who are in 13th place in the Championship) and Norwich City (who are 8th in the Premier League).

Sunderland 2-0 Arsenal…5 places separate Sunderland and Arsenal (both of the Premier league, with Arsenal in 4th place and Sunderland in 9th place).

Best results for a replay:
(Sat. 19 Feb. 2012) by Birmingham City, w/…Chelsea 1-1 Birmingham City…21 places and 1 league separate Birmingham City (who are in 6th place in the Championship) and Chelsea (who are in 5th place in the Premier League).
(Sun. 19 Feb. 2012) by Stevenage, w/…Stevenage 0-0 Tottenham Hotspur…47 places and 2 leagues separate Stevenage (who are in 6th place in League One) and Tottenham (who are in 3rd place in the Premier League).

Here is a link to an article I really enjoyed…From Deadspin.com, by Josh Brill, from Feb.18 2012, ‘Deadspin’s Better-Late-Than-Never Guide To The FA Cup‘.

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Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup‘.
Thanks to the FA.com, for the photo of the FA Cup trophy.
Thanks to soccernet.espn.go.com for current attendance figures [13 February, 2012].
Thanks to Millwall FC shop, for Millwall kit badge.

January 26, 2012

2011-12 FA Cup, Fourth Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup — admin @ 1:05 pm

2011-12_fa-cup_4th-round_post_.gif
2011-12 FA Cup Fourth Round


FA Cup – results, fixtures, articles (bbc.co.uk/FA Cup).

[Note: the text and the illustration below were added 2 days after this post was originally posted.]
FA Cup 4th Round upsets, from Saturday 28 Jan. 2012 -
Hull City 0-1 Crawley Town…45 places and 2 leagues separate Crawley Town (who are in 3rd place in League Two) and Hull City (who are 8th in the Championship).

Brighton & Hove Albion 1-0 Newcastle United…24 places and 1 league separate Brighton (10th in the Championship) and Newcastle (6th in the Premier League).

Liverpool 2-1 Manchester United…5 places separate Liverpool (7th in the Premier League) and Man Utd. (2nd in the Premier League).

Bolton Wanderers 2-1 Swansea City…4 places separate Bolton (17th in the Premier League) and Swansea (13th in the Premier League).

liverpool-2_1-man-utd_2011-12_fa-cup_4th-round_-.gif

Photo credits above – Reuters via dailymail.co.uk. Getty images via uefa.com.
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Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup‘.
Thanks to the FA.com, for the photo of the FA Cup trophy.

January 4, 2012

2011-12 FA Cup, Third Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup — admin @ 9:36 pm

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2011-12 FA Cup Third Round Proper


FA Cup, results, fixtures, articles (bbc.co.uk).

The FA.com.

Note: the chart below was posted after Third Round results came in…
2011-12_fa-cup-cup_3rd-round_upsets_f.gif

The map page features a location-map of the 64 clubs playing in the 2011-12 FA Cup Third Round Proper. Attendance data inclusive to 3 January 2012 is shown at the far left on the map page. Full fixture list is at the far right on the map page.


Derbies -
The match-ups that feature clubs whose grounds are closest apart (as measured by approximate driving distance)…
Manchester City v. Manchester United – 9.4 km. (5.8 miles).
Fleetwood Town v. Blackpool – 14 km. (9 miles).
Fulham v. Charlton Athletic – 16 km. (10 miles).
Dagenham & Redbridge v. Millwall – 20 km. (12 miles).
Birmingham City v. Wolverhampton Wanderers – 23 km. (14 miles).
Nottingham Forest v. Leicester City – 38 km. (23 miles).

Here is the breakdown of the clubs in the 2011-12 FA Cup Third Round Proper…
All 20 clubs from the Premier League [the 1st Level].
All 24 clubs from the Football League Championship [the 2nd Level].
7 clubs from the Football League One [the 3rd Level] – Charlton Athletic, MK Dons, Notts County, Oldham Athletic, Sheffield United, Sheffield Wednesday, Stevenage.
9 clubs from the Football League Two [the 4th Level] – Bradford City, Bristol Rovers, Cheltenham Town, Crawley Town, Dagenham & Redbridge, Gillingham, Macclesfield Town, Shrewsbury Town, Swindon Town.
4 clubs from Non-League football, with 3 clubs from the Conference National [the 5th Level] – Fleetwood Town, Tamworth, Wrexham; and 1 club from the Conference South [the 6th Level] – Salisbury City.

The Third Round is when clubs from the top flight and the second division enter the competition. That accounts for 44 of the 64 spots. The other 20 spots are comprised of the clubs who have survived Qualifying Round ties (4 Non-League clubs) and/or First and Second Round ties (16 third and fourth division clubs).

Salisbury City of the 6th Level league the Conference South are the lowest-placed club still alive in the competition. The Wiltshire-based club, nicknamed the Whites, have advanced through 5 rounds, and defeated Swindon Supermarine, Poole Town, Bishop’s Stortford, Arlesey Town, and Grimsby Town to get to the Third Round.

Salisbury City. Est. 1947. The Whites.
The Raymond McEnhill Stadium, Old Sarum, Salisbury, Wiltshire. Capacity 3,740. Opened in 1997. Salisbury City, a 6th Level/Conference South club, currently are averaging 738 per game, and sit 16th in the Conference South (5 points above the drop-zone).

In 2011-12, under second-year player/manager Darrell Clarke, Salisbury City reached the 3rd Round of the FA Cup for the first time in the club’s 66-year history. The Whites did this by first holding Grimsby Town to a 0-0 draw before 2,161 at the RayMac, then winning the replay at Grimsby 3-2 in extta time. From bbc.co.uk/Football, from 13 Dec. 2100, ‘Grimsby Town 2-3 Salisbury City‘.

Salisbury drew Sheffield United in the 3rd Round, and will travel to Brammall Lane in South Yorkshire for the match on 7 January, 2012.
salisbury-city-fc_old-sarum_n.gif"
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Photo and Image credits – bluesqfootball.com. salisburycity-fc.co.uk. Mrs.Plum at en.wikipedia.org
maps.google.com/maps. gloupe.com. english-heritage.org.uk.
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Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup/Third Round‘.
Thanks to the FA.com, for the photo of the FA Cup trophy.

Thanks to soccernet.espn.go.com for Premier League and Football League clubs’ current attendance figures [3 January, 2012].
Thanks to soccerway.com for Conference National and Conference South clubs’ current attendance figures.
Thanks to southern-football-league.co.uk for Salisbury City 2010-11 average attendance figure.

Thanks to Sportmapworld.com for Man City/Man Utd. distance.
Thanks to UK Distance Calculator.com.

Thanks to Salisburyjournal.co.uk/sport/salisburycityfc/Salisbury City Club History.

November 29, 2011

2011-12 FA Cup, Second Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup,Eng. Non-League — admin @ 8:01 pm

2011-12_fa-cup_2nd-round_post_.gif
2011-12 FA Cup Second Round Proper


bbc/football/FA Cup.

Here is the league breakdown of the 40 clubs left in the competition at this stage. [Note, Premier League/1st Level clubs, and Football League Championship/2nd Level clubs (64 clubs) will enter the competition in the next round, the Third Round Proper, in the first weekend of January, 2012]…
Clubs in the 2011-12 FA Cup Second Round Proper -
28 clubs are from the Football League, with 13 clubs from League One (the 3rd Level), and 15 clubs from League Two (the 4th Level).
12 clubs are Non-League Football clubs (from Levels 5 through Level 8), with 6 clubs from the Conference National (the 5th Level), 3 clubs from the Conference South (a 6th Level league), 2 clubs from the Southerm League Premier Division (a 7th Level league also known as the Evo-Stick Southern), and 1 club from the Isthmiann League Division 1 North (an 8th Level league, also known as the Ryman North).

As in the First Round, the lowest-placed club still alive in the competition is Redbridge FC, who are from East London and are an 8th Level club in the Isthmian League Division 1 North. Redbridge FC currently average 125 per game (from home league matches to 26 November, 2011). In the First Round, the Motormen drew 0-0 with the 6th Level/Conference South club Oxford City, and won the replay in Oxford 2-1 after extra time. Redbridge will play at Crawley Town in the Second Round.

Listed below are the 3 matches to be televised live in the USA & Canada and/or the UK, with photos of the home grounds and info on the clubs involved…
Friday, 2 December at 7.30pm GMT – Fleetwood Town v Yeovil Town – ESPN (UK).
Fleetwood Town are a coastal Lancashire-based Conference National club [5th Level], who currently [28 Nov., 2011] lead the Conference by 3 points over Wrexham (though Wrexham have a game in hand and a higher goal differemce). Fleetwood Town had the biggest upset in the First Round Proper, beating a Football League One club – Wycombe Wanderers – that was 2 league levels and 27 places above them. Fleetwood Town currently average 1,712 per game (home league matches to 28 November, 2011)).

Last May, Fleetwood Town made the Conference play-offs, but were schooled by eventual promotion-winners AFC Wimbledon, by an aggregate score of 8-1. But I’ve got a feeling that if the Cod Army don’t win automatic promotion this season, they won’t be embarrassing themselves in the play-offs this coming May. This is a club whose trajectory is pointing straight up. In a 7-season span between 2004 and 2011, Fleetwood won promotion 4 times. Fleetwood Town are in only their second season in the 5th Level, and their ambition is evident in two ways. The first way one can see that Fleetwood has their sights set on the Football League is in the number of high-profile signings they have made recently, such as ex-Wrexham FW Andy Mangan (who led the Conference in scoring when he was on Forest Green Rovers in 2008-09, and who scored 16 goals for Wrexham in 2010-11, and who currently has 6 league goals for FTFC this season so far). Mangan scored one of the goals in the First Round victory over Wycombe on 5th Novembe, on a nice volley. Highlights here…’Fleetwood Town vs. Wycombe Wanderers [Fleetwood Town 2-1 Wycombe]‘ (Footytube.com). Another big move Fleetwood Town made recently was in securing the services of FW Richard Brodie (Conference leading scorer in 2009-10, when he was on York City, and scorer of 12 league goals for the promotion-winning Crawley Town last season), on loan from Crawley Town. [Brodie actually contributed in a negative way in the Cod Army's upset win over Wycombe - he was sent off right before the end of the first half, and Fleetwood had to play the second half with 10 men.] Fleetwood Town also boasts the 3rd-highest scorer currently in the Conference – ex-Halifax Town FW James Vardy, who has scored 13 goals in 13 league games this season for Fleetwood (plus 4 goals total when at Halifax Town at the start of the 2011-12 season). Vardy is the subject of transfer speculation, but Fleetwood would do well to hold off selling him until their promotion-run is sorted. Rounding out the club’s scoring threats is FW Magno Viera, a Brazilian, who was fourth best on the list of 2011-12 Conference scoring leaders, with 22 goals.

The second way in which Fleetwood Town’s ambition to become a larger and higher-placed club is apparent is in their new stand at their Highbury Stadium – the Parkside Stand – which has a capacity of 1,841 (all seated), plus 40 luxury boxes. The roof’s not too shabby either (see below).

Fleetwood Town will host Yeovil Town in the FA Cup Second Round.

Yeovil Town, from Somerset, in the West Country, are a League One [3rd Level] club who currently sit 22nd, in the relegation zone. Yeovil Town never had League history prior to 2003, when they won the Conference National. The Glovers then won promotion to the third tier two years later by winning League Two in 2004-05. This is a club who has been punching above their weight since then, ending up in the bottom half of the table in 5 of their last 6 seasons. Yeovil have a rather small fan base for the 3rd Level – they currently are averaging 3,813 per game.
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Photo credit – http://www.fleetwoodtownfc.com/club/highbury-stadium/.

(Early game on) Sunday, 4 December 12.30pm GMT – AFC Totton v Bristol Rovers – ITV1 (UK).
AFC Totton, nicknamed the Stags, are a Hampshire-based club in the Southern Premier [a 7th Level league], and currently sit 2nd in the league, in the play-off places, one point behind Leamington, with 2 games in hand. Totton is a western suburb of Southampton, on the eastern edge of the New Forest. The club have a brand-new ground, the 3,000-capacity Testwood Stadium, which opened on 9 February, 2011. The opening of their new ground was timed fortuitously, because 3 months later that season, AFC Totton won promotion, by winning the Southern League Divsion 1 South by 2 points over local-Greater-Southampton-rivals Sholing FC.

AFC Totton had never been in the FA Cup Proper before this season, and their first appearance in the First Round was a memorable one – they hosted, and demolished, Bradford Park Avenue (also a 7th-Level-club) by a score of 8-1. A club-record 2,315 attended the match. Totton’s current average attendance (home league matches to 26 Nov., 2011) is 383 per game.

Totton will host Bristol Rovers in the Second Round.

Bristol Rovers are from Horfield, which is a northern suburb of Bristol. The Gas are a League Two [4th Level] club, and currently sit 18th. Bristol Rovers currently draw 5,873 per game.
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Photo credit – Southdinista at Flickr.com. Southdinista’s Photostream.

(Late game on) Sunday, 4 December 5.00pm GMT/12:00 noon ET – Sutton United v Notts County – ESPN (UK) and Fox Soccer Plus (USA & Canada).
Sutton United FC are a just-promoted Conference South club, from southwest London (but from an area that historically was part of the County of Surrey). The U’s currently sit 3rd in Conference South, in the play-off places. Sutton United are averaging 776 per game (home league matches to 26 Nov., 2011).

Notts County FC, the oldest professional association football club in the world, are these days an upper-mid-table 3rd level club. The Magpies currently sit 6th in League One, in the play-off places; and average 6,210 per game. The random element of the FA Cup draw has seen these two clubs match up three times now in the last 18 FA Cup competitions (Notts County hosted and defeated Sutton United in the 1993-94 FA Cup Third Round; and also in the 2008-09 FA Cup First Round).
sutton-united_gander-green-lane_.gif
Image and photo credits – Bing.com/maps/Bird’s Eye satellite view.
Areedef at en.wikipedia.org/Borough_Sports_Ground.
Chris Hayes at Flickr.com/ Chris Hayes’ Photostream.

    Sutton United’s FA Cup Giant Killing – January, 1989 – Sutton United 2-1 Coventry City

23 years ago, on 7 January, 1989, Sutton United claimed one of the biggest scalps in FA Cup history, when they upset the 1987 FA Cup winners Coventry City. In 1988-89, Sutton United were a mid-table 5th Level Conference club. Coventry City were a very solid top flight club in 1988-89 – they finished in 7th place that year in the old First Division, and the Sky Blues were in the middle of a 34-season-straight-run in the First Division / Premier League (from 1967-68 to 2000-01).

An overflow crowd of over 8,000 attended that match at Gander Green Lane in early 1989, with more watching from gardens and second-story windows of adjacent buildings. Sutton won 2-1, with bricklayer-by-trade Matthew Hanlan winning it in the 60th minute with his far-post volley off a cross from Phil Dawson, who had collected the ball from a short, decoy corner-kick. You can see images from that historic upset below.
From Youtube, posted by hammerfalljag, ‘Sutton Utd v Coventry City FA Cup 1988-89 Highlights‘ [4:43 video]…1st goal (Sutton United, Tony Rains, 42′) at 1:08 of video. 2nd goal (Coventry City, David Phillips, 52′) at 2:05 of video. 3rd and winning goal (Sutton United, Matthew Hanlan, 60′) at 2:50 of video.
sutton-united_gander-green-lane_1989-fa-cup-3rd-round_upset_sutton-united2-1coventry-city_v.gif
Screenshots (4) from Youtube video posted by hammerfalljag, ‘Sutton Utd v Coventry City FA Cup 1988-89 Highlights‘ [4:43 video].
Photo credits – Hanlan goal; and Rains and Hanlan celebrating, from http://www.suttonunited.net/info_history.html

Thanks to SuttonUnited.net.
Thanks to FleetwoodTownFC.com.
Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup‘.
Thanks to ESPN Soccernet for Football League attendance figures (link set at League One attendance).
Thanks to Soccerway.com for Conference attendance figures (link set at Conference National).
Thabnks to NonLeague.co.uk for attendance figures for 7th and 8th Level leagues.

November 8, 2011

2011-12 FA Cup, First Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup,Eng. Non-League — admin @ 4:47 pm

211-12_fa-cup_first-round_post_1.gif
2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper


FA Cup – Fixtures, Results (bbc.co.uk/FA Cup/Fixtures).

Non-league sides cause shocks to reach FA Cup second round‘ (BBC/Football).
[Note the following list of upsets in the First Round Proper, and the link to the article above, and the 8-photo-gallery below, were all inserted here 4 days after this post was originally posted.]

FA Cup First Round Proper, Saturday 12 Nov. 2011 – 8-photo-gallery from ESPN Soccernet.
With respect to league placement of all clubs at that point in time [12 November, 2011], here are all the upsets from the 2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper, on Saturday the 12th…(note: the club that produced the upset is in bold, and Difference in league placement and levels is listed for each)…

Fleetwood Town 2-0 Wycombe Wanderers. Difference: 27 places and 2 levels/ mitigating factor, Fleetwood Town have (probably) the highest wage bill in the Conference this season.
Swindon Town 4-1 Huddersfield Town. Difference: 25 places and 1 level.
Bradford City 1-0 Rochdale. Difference: 25 places and 1 level/ mitigating factor, Bradford City are a larger club (Bradford’s average gate is 10,199, while Rochdale’s is 2,770).
Tranmere 0-1 Cheltenham Town. Difference: 19 places and 1 level.
Chesterfield 1-3 Torquay United. Difference: 15 places and 1 level.
Luton Town 1-0 Northampton Town. Difference: 12 places and 1 level/ mitigating factor, Luton Town are a larger club (Luton’s average gate is 6,128, while Northampton’s is 4,211).
Bury 0-2 Crawley Town. Difference: 12 places and 1 level/ mitigating factor, Crawley’s wage bill is higher than most clubs in League One (like Bury).
Chelmsford City 4-0 AFC Telford United. Difference: 11 places and 1 level.
Sutton United 1-0 Kettering Town. Difference: 8 places and 1 level.


The FA Cup First Round Proper
The FA Cup [Football Association Cup] is the oldest knock-out competition for association football in the world. The first season of the competition was in 1871-72. The FA Cup competition pre-dates the formation of the Football League by 17 years. The 2011-12 FA Cup is the 131st season of the competition. 763 football clubs in England (and Wales) entered the 2011-12 FA Cup. There will be 14 rounds – 6 preliminary rounds have already been played.

Holders are Manchester City FC. Manchester City beat Stoke City on 4th May, 2011 by a 1-0 score at Wembley, with the winner scored in the 74th minute by City MF Yaya Touré. To get to the Final, Manchester City had beaten Leicester City (in a replay), Notts County (also in a replay), Aston Villa, Reading, and Manchester United.

The map page shows all 80 English (and Welsh) football clubs that have qualified for the 2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper. Average attendances and levels of the 80 clubs in this round of the competition are listed at the far left of the map page (figures from home league matches to 31st Oct.2011). At the far right of the map page are all the ties for the First Round Proper. The map shows the locations of the 78 clubs in this round of the competition from England, and the 2 clubs in it from Wales (Newport County AFC and Wrexham FC).

The lowest-placed club still alive in the competition has won 5 matches to get here. That club is Redbridge FC, of East London. Redbridge is an 8th Level club from the Isthmian League Division One North. [Further down in this post, there is a bit about Redbridge FC.] Redbridge beat Cockfosters, Wingate & Finchley, Bury Town, Dunstable Town, and Ebbsfleet United to get to the First Round Proper.

In the First Round Proper, Football League clubs from the 3rd and 4th Levels (Football Leagues One and Two) enter the competition.

Stadium photos and info on televised matches
Here are the grounds (photos of 6 grounds below) that have live televised 2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper matches (in the UK and/or in the USA & Canada)…

Friday, 11 November, 2011 on FSC (USA & Canada), Cambridge United v. Wrexham at Abbey Stadium in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire

Abbey Stadium, capacity 10,847 (4,948 seated). Opened August, 1923. Last renovation was in 2002, with the new all-seater South Stand. Cambridge United’s current average attendance – 2,509 per game.
Cambridge United are in the play-off places, at 3rd, in the Conference National. Wrexham are in the play-off places, at 2nd, in the Conference National.
cambridge-utd_abbey-stadium_c.gif

Photo credits – Bing.com/maps. Hugh Venables via Geograph.org.

[Early game on] Saturday, 12 November, 2011, on ESPN (UK) and on FSC (USA & Canada), Newport County AFC v. Shrewsbury Town at Newport Stadium in Newport, South Wales

Newport Stadium, capacity 5,500 (3,300 seated). Opened 1994. Afflicted with a running track since 1994. Newport’s current average attendance – 1,444 per game.
Newport County are in the relegation zone, at 22nd, in the Conference National. Shrewsbury Town are in the play-off places, at 4th, in League Two.
newport-county_newport-stadium_d.gif
Photo credits – Bing.com/maps. The Amber Terrace’s Photostream at Flickr.com.

Saturday, 12 November, 2011, on FSC (USA & Canada), Alfreton Town v. Carlisle United at North Street in Alfreton, Derbyshire

The Impact Arena [aka North Street], capacity 3,600 (1,500 seated). Alfreton, Derbyshire. Opened 1959. Alfreton’s current average attendance [home league matches to 5 Nov.2011] – 775 per game.
Alfreton are in the relegation zone, at 23rd, in the Conference National [this is their first-ever-season there in the 5th Level]. Carlisle United sit 10th in League One.
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Photo credits – Stephan Harris at Panoramio.com. Bluesquarefootball.com. Thefootballnetwork.com. David Purseglove at alfretontownfc.com (link goes to match report/photos for 4th Qualifying Round).

[late game on] Saturday, 12 November, 2011, on FSC+ (USA & Canada), Swindon Town v. Huddersfield Town AFC at County Ground in Swindon, Wiltshire

The County Ground, capacity 14,700 (all-seated). Opened 1896. Future expansion/renovations shelved after Swindon Town’s relegation to League Two in 2011. Swindon Town’s current average attendance – 7,967 per game.
Swindon Town are in the play-off places, at 6th, in League Two. Huddersfield Town are in the play-off places, at 2nd, in League One.

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Photo credits – Swindonweb.com. Bing.com/maps. Richard Corbin, ‘County Ground/Fast Plant Town End’(en.wikipedia.org).

Sunday, 13 November, 2011, on FSC+ (USA & Canada), FC Halifax Town v. Charlton Athletic at The Shay in Halifax, West Yorkshire

The Shay, capacity 10,476 (5,830 seated). Opened August, 1921. Latest renovation – the new East Stand, capacity 3,500, built between 2000-02 & 2008-10. ['Shay', in old English, means small wood, thicket or grove.] The East stand sat forlorn and only partially-rebuilt for over 5 years after the relegation from the Football League in 2002 of the now-defunct Halifax Town AFC (1911-2008). In 2008, the local Council of Calderdale stepped in and put 4.5 million pounds towards the re-build. The new East Stand opened in March, 2010. FC Halifax Town’s current average attendance is 1,453 per game.
FC Halifax Town sit 10th in the Conference North. Charlton Athletic are the highest-placed team in the First Round Proper – they sit first in League One.
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Photo credits – Bing.com/maps. the Dribbling Code.wordpress.com, ‘Tue 19 April 2011, FC Halifax Town v Frickley Athletic (NPL Prem)‘. 100 Grounds Club.blogspot.com, ‘My Matchday – 243 The Shay [6 March, 2010]‘. Halifaxafc.co.uk.

[late game on] Sunday, 13 November, 2011, on ESPN (UK) and on FSC (USA & Canada), Morecambe v. Sheffield Wednesday at the Globe Arena in Morecambe, Lancashire

Globe Arena, capacity 6,476 (2,247 seated). Opened August, 2010. Morecambe FC’s current average attendance – 2,509 per game.
Morecambe are in the play-off places, at 5th, in League Two. Sheffield Wednesday are in the play-off places, at 3rd, in League One.
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Photo credits – globearena.co.uk.

As usual, I am featuring the smallest clubs who have qualified for the FA Cup First Round Proper, and this season the two lowest-drawing clubs which have made it to the FA Cup’s first round are Redbridge FC and Arlesey Town FC. Redbridge FC are an 8th Level/Isthmian League Division One North club, and are East London-based. Redbridge FC currently are drawing 125 per game. Arlesey Town FC are a 7th Level/Southern League club, and are from Bedfordshire. Arlesey Town are currently drawing 137 per game. Both these sides punched above their weight and beat 5th Level/Conference National clubs to advance to the FA Cup First Round. Redbridge have been to the First Round twice before, both times as Ford United, in 1998-99 and in 2003-04. This will be Arlesey Town’s first appearance in the FA Cup Proper.

29 October, 2011 – Redbridge 2-0 Ebbsfleet United
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Match photos by David Horn at Redbridge FC site, http://www.pitchero.com/clubs/redbridge/s/results-reports-18804.html?official=0&fixture_id=911716.

From the FA.com site, ‘Motormen roar past Ebbsfleet‘.
On Saturday, 29 October, in a 4th Qualifying Round match at Redbridge’s 316-seat ground Oakside, in the East London borough of Redbridge, before a crowd of 442, the Motormen scored two late goals to defeat Ebbsfleet United 2-0. Above are photos of the two goals, which were scored by Ryan Murray in the 80th minute and Joe Gardner in the 89th minute. Note; above in the second picture (middle row, left), you can see the ball, en route to the goal, after Ryan Murray’s flick-on header…by the left elbow of the number 6 Ebbsfleet player.

Redbridge FC are nicknamed the Motormen because their club evolved from football clubs associated with the car industry (an industry that has long had a presence in the East London/Essex area). In keeping with the automotive theme, the crest of Reddbridge FC, as you can see {here (Redbridge FC site)} looks like a hood ornament. Redbridge ground-share with Barkingside FC (a 9th Level club), in an arrangement dating back to 2001 which saw Ford United (future-Redbridge FC) buy the lease to Oakside Stadium from Barkingside FC, refurbish the ground considerably, all the while allowing Barkingside FC to maintain a permanent ground-sharing agreement. In July 2004 Ford United FC changed their name to Redbridge FC. This occurred right after they had finished in 13th place in the 2003-04 Istmian League, and this meant they would move up to be one of the 44 clubs to fill the new Conferebnce North and Conference South leagues. So for the 2004-05 season, Redbridge FC became a charter member of the Conference South [6th Level]. However, as the club’s website says in it’s History, this proved to be a bridge too far, and Redbridge were relegated from Conference South in 2005, and the following season the club suffered a second-straight relegation, to the Isthmian Division 1 North. The club stabilized, and in 2007-08, under player/manager Dean Holdsworth, they narrowly missed out on promotion, losing in the play-off final on penalties 5-4 to Canvey Island. But 8th place, 18th place, and 16th place finishes have followed, and currently [7 Nov.2011] Redbridge again are in a relegation battle, in 15th place in the Ryman North. Redbridge’s manager is Terry Spillane, who moved over to Redbridge after a solid-second-place finish managing 9th Level/Essex Senior League club Stansted FC in 2010-11. On the BBC London Non-League football Show, Season 5, Episode 13 (31. Oct.2011) {here}, Terry Spillane told host Caroline Barker how hard it was for him to get his head ’round the fact that they have made it to the FA Cup’s first round [the segment with Redbridge and Spillane stars around 10:30 into the 55:19-long episode], and that the chairman paid the tab for the lads to have a night out at a Chelsea night club. The great thing about this story is that Redbridge have a solid shot at advancing, because they have drawn a home tie versus opposition just one level above them – Oxford City, of the Evo-Stik (Southern) Prem [7th Level]. Although in fairness to Oxford City, they are in a promotion-campaign, level on points with Evo-Stick leaders AFC Totton (who also qualified) and the 2nd place team, Cambridge City. If anything, qualifying for the FA Cup First Round will increase the profile of Redbridge FC in their borough, and hopefully, get their gate figures to rise a bit.

Redbridge FC are not to be confused with the former club Redbridge Forest FC (who played in Redbridge Borough, merged in 1992 with Dagenham FC, and moved a few miles south and east to Dagenham FC’s ground in Barking and Dagenham Borough, and then won promotion to the Football League in 2008 [you can see Dagenham & Redbridge's in East London location on the map page]).

On 12 November, in the 2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper, Redbridge will host 7th Level/Southern League side Oxford City.

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Image credits – Bing.com/maps. London boroughs map from en.wikipedia.org,’London Borough of Redbridge‘.

Also on 29 October, in another 4th Qualifying Round match, Arlesey Town came from behind to beat Forest Green Rovers 2-1, with the equalizing goal from the spot by Chris Dillon with 5 minutes left, and an extra-time winner from a free kick by David Denney. Arlesey Town are from Arlesey, in Central Bedfordshire near the border with Hertfordshire, 55 km. (34 miles) north of central London. Arlesey has a population of around 5,600 {2007 estimate}.

On 12 November, in the 2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper, Arlesey Town will travel to Wiltshire to play 6th Level/Conference South club Salisbury City.
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Image credits – Bing.com/maps. Kit illustration from en.wikipedia.org, ‘Arseley Town F.C.‘. Hitchin Road ground photos from Non-League Football Ground Blogger, ‘13/01/2007 – Arlesey Town 2 Potters Bar Town 1‘.
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Thanks to the contributors to the pages at en.wikipedia.org, ‘2011-12 FA Cup‘.
Thanks to ESPN Soccernet, for attendance figures for League One and League Two clubs [Levels 3-4] (48 clubs in the First Round Proper).
Thanks to Soccerway.com, for attendance figures for Conference National, Conference North and Conference South clubs [Levels 5-6].
Thanks to the Nonleague.co.uk site for attendance figures for clubs in Levels 7-8.
Thanks to the FA Cup silversmiths, Thomas Lyte Silver, for the photo of the FA Cup trophy, here.

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