November 8, 2011

2011-12 FA Cup, First Round Proper.

Filed under: 2011-12 FA Cup — admin @ 4:47 pm

2011-12 FA Cup First Round Proper

FA Cup – Fixtures, Results ( 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.

Photo credits – Hugh Venables via

[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.
Photo credits – The Amber Terrace’s Photostream at

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.
Photo credits – Stephan Harris at David Purseglove at (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.


Photo credits – Richard Corbin, ‘County Ground/Fast Plant Town End’(

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.
Photo credits – the Dribbling, ‘Tue 19 April 2011, FC Halifax Town v Frickley Athletic (NPL Prem)‘. 100 Grounds, ‘My Matchday – 243 The Shay [6 March, 2010]‘.

[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.
Photo credits –

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
Match photos by David Horn at Redbridge FC site,

From the 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.

Image credits – London boroughs map from,’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.
Image credits – Kit illustration from, ‘Arseley Town F.C.‘. Hitchin Road ground photos from Non-League Football Ground Blogger, ‘13/01/2007 – Arlesey Town 2 Potters Bar Town 1‘.

Thanks to the contributors to the pages at, ‘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, for attendance figures for Conference National, Conference North and Conference South clubs [Levels 5-6].
Thanks to the 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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