November 1, 2016

2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round – map and attendance list./+ the 3 FA Cup 1st Round first-timers (Merstham FC, Stamford AFC, Westfields FC).

Filed under: 2016-17 FA Cup — admin @ 3:07 pm

2016-17 FA Cup, First Round Proper: location-map with current average attendances

-The competition…FA Cup (
-First Round: fixtures/teams…2016-17 FA Cup/First Round Proper (
-Preview, from FA Cup Factfile…FA Cup 2016-17 1st Round ‘Proper’ tie-by-tie preview (
-BBC’s page on the FA Cup…FA Cup (

-From the Guardian/football…FA Cup first round: the minnows’ stories, from Westfields to Merstham (Interviews by Alan Smith and Paul MacInnes at

By Bill Turianski on 1 November 2016;
The map (click on image at the top of this post) shows all 80 clubs who have qualified for the 2016-17 FA Cup First Round Proper. Also on the map page is the 1st Round fixture list, and there is a list of the 80 clubs’ current home league average attendances.

There were 736 clubs accepted into this season’s tournament. The 44 clubs from the Premier League (the 1st division) and the Football League Championship (the 2nd division) will join the competition in the 3rd Round (played in early January). The 1st Round and the 2nd Round are contested between all the clubs from the two lower leagues of the Football League (48 teams) – League One (3rd division) and League Two (4th division) – plus the 32 Non-League clubs who qualified through the preliminary and qualifying rounds (6 rounds). After those 6 qualifying rounds were played this season, the lowest placed club still alive, and into the 2016-17 1st Round, is the 9th-level-side Westfields FC of Hereford (see Westfields section further below). As well as the Westfields section, further below there are also sections on the other two clubs making their FA Cup 1st Round debuts: the 8th-level side Stamford AFC of south Lincolnshire, and the 7th-level side Merstham FC of Surrey. (Note: two other clubs which were the result of club-mergers – Solihull Moors and Spennymoor Town – are making their 1st Round debuts, but in both cases one of the pre-merger-clubs had qualified for the 1st Round in the past [Spennymoor Town (est. 2005), as Evenwood United in 1956-57; Solihull Moors (est. 2007), as both Solihull Borough in 1992-93 and in 1997-98, and as Moor Green in 2002-03].)

This is the 136th FA Cup competition. The FA Cup is the oldest association football competition in the world. The FA Cup was first played in the 1871-72 season. This year’s competition [2016-17] will be the 136th edition of the tournament. Current Cup Holders are Manchester United, who beat Crystal Palace 2-1 (aet), at Wembley Stadium on 21 May 2016. That put Manchester United back with Arsenal at the top of the all-time FA Cup title-winners’ list – both have won 12 FA Cup titles {List of FA Cupfinals/Results by team (}.

Schedule for 2016-17 FA Cup…

    The 3 clubs which are making their FA Cup 1st Round debuts in 2016-17:
    Merstham FC (of Surrey), Stamford AFC (of south Lincolnshire) and Westfields FC (of Hereford)…
    Merstham FC.

Est. 1892.
Ground: Moatside, Merstham, Surrey. Capacity: 2,000. Opened 1921.
Manager: Hayden Bird.

Merstham is a small village in Surrey of around 8,000, near Redhill, and located 28 km (17 mi) S of central London. Merstahm FC are a 7th-division club that wear old-gold (aka pale orange) and black colours. Their nickname is the Moatsiders, after their ground, Moatside.

Five years after their founding in 1892, Merstham FC were a founder-member of the Redhill and District League in 1897. In the early 1920s, Mertham FC moved into their present-day location just south-east of the village centre. It took a couple decades to finally win their first league-title, and Merstham ended up winning 5 titles in the Redhill and District League (1927, 1935, 1936, 1950, 1951). By the spring of 1951, the the club felt they could take a step up, and they applied to the Surrey Intermediate League, and in 1952-53 Merstham were admitted into the Eastern Section of the Surrey Intermediate League. Merstham promptly won the title at the first try (1953), but were unable to win the league for the next eleven seasons. Nevertheless, after 12 seasons in the Surrey Intermediate East, Merstham was admitted into the Surrey Senior League in 1964. They won one title in their 14 years there, in 1972-73. In 1978 they joined the London Spartan League, but only finished as good as in third place (in the first two of their six seasons there). Also at that point in time, Merstham made their debut in the FA Cup in 1978-79, losing to Hendon in the First Qualifying round.

Then, as it says at the official Merstham FC site’s history page …”By the 1984/85 season Merstham had decided that the travelling involved in the Spartan League was proving too much on the club’s resources and they applied to join the Combined Counties League, partly reformed from the Surrey Senior League. This new league encompassed teams from Surrey, Berkshire, Hampshire and Middlesex. 1984 also saw the completion of the new clubhouse replacing the portable shelter that had been in use since 1975.”…{excerpt from}.

Merstham remained in the Combined Counties League for over two decades, up to 2007-08, when they finally won promotion to the Isthmian League South (an 8th level league). Seven seasons later, Merstham won promotion to the Isthmian Premier Division (in the 7th level), by winning the 2014-15 Isthmian South play-offs. Merstham had finished fourth that season, then beat Faversham Town 5-4 aggregate in the semifinals, and then the Moatsiders beat Folkestone Invicta 0-3 in the final at Folkestone, Kent. Then last season [2015-16], Merstham had a decent showing in their first-ever season in the 7th level, finishing in 10th place and drawing 201 per game {median-crowd size in the Isthmian Premier last season was 261 per game; see this}. This season, their second in the 7th tier, sees Merstham currently in 17th place, with an average gate of 195 {see Isthmian table and attendances here (}.

To qualify for the 2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round, Merstahm beat 6th-division side Ebbsfleet United (of Kent) 2-1, in front of 664 at Moatside, on Saturday 15 October 2016 [in a 4th Qualifying round match] (see photos from that game below). Triple their average crowd showed up at the Moatside for the match. Merstham fell behind in the 10th minute, then equalized in the 26th on a nice curling 25-yard strike by the Merstham squad captain, MF Tom Kavanagh. The winner came just before the half on a goal by Merstham FW Charlie Penny, who scored at close range after an Xavier Vidal free kick found its way into the box.

Then, in the FA Cup 1st Round draw, Merstham drew a very plum tie – at home, versus 3rd-division side Oxford United. Then it was announced that the Mertham/Oxford match at Moatside would be televised live {see this, FA Cup live TV date on BT Sport for Merstham FC vs Oxford United (}. So the Moatsiders of Merstham will play at their humble home-ground, versus a former First-Division team – a team 4 divisions above them, on national television, on Saturday 5 October 2016. That means a £67,500 windfall for Merstham {see this from the, which also mentions the other televised matches}. The Merstham v Oxford United match is sold out.

Photo and Image credits above –
Street-view of Mertham village centre, photo by Peter Trimming at Interior shot of ground, photo by Merstham FC at 7 photos of 4th Qualifying round match [Merstham 2-1 Ebbsfleet Utd on 15 Oct 2016], photos by Donna Prior at

    Stamford AFC.

Est. 1896.
Ground: Zeeco Stadium, Stamford, Lincolnshire. Capacity: 2,000 (250 seated). Opened December 2014.
Manager: Graham Drury.

Stamford AFC are an 8th-level club, currently [2016-17] playing in the Northern Premier League Division One South. As of 1 November 2016, Stamford are in 19th place in the 22-team Northern League D1-South. But, due to their FA Cup-run this season, Stamford have played about 4 or 5 less games than most other teams in their league, and that has contributed to their lower-table position {here is the 2016-17 Northern Premier League Division One South table (with attendances)}. Stamford are currently drawing 284 per game, which is second-best in the league (AFC Rushden & Diamonds draw best in the league at 454; median average attendance in the league is 169 per game).

Stamford AFC drew over 4 times more than their league-average for their 4th Qualifying Round match, on 15 October versus 5th-division-side Wrexham (of North Wales). Stamford drew 1,264 and played a strong second half to come back from a 0-1 deficit and equalize the game (on a penalty converted by Lee Beeson), and send it to a re-play. This in what, before the game, the PA announcer called Stamford’s biggest game in its history. From the official Stamford AFC site, {here is a gallery from that match, 2016/17 : Stamford AFC v Wrexham AFC (15.10.16)}.

Then, three days later, in the re-play, played at the Racecourse Ground in Wrexham, North Wales on Tuesday 18 October, Stamford beat Wrexham 2-3 in aet, with Jake Duffy’s extra-time free kick the winner {you can see that nicely curled shot at the following link [scroll down there half-way], Stamford AFC reach FA Cup 1st round for first time in 120-year history (by Stefan Pidluznyj at}. Stamford had bested a team 3 levels and 73 league-places higher than them. And so Stamford AFC qualified for the FA Cup 1st Round for the first time in the club’s 120-year history. {See this article, FA Cup: Wrexham 2-3 Stamford (}

Stamford AFC are from the small market town of Stamford, Lincolnshire, which has a population of around 19,000. Stamford is 167 km (104 mi) N of London by road, and Stamford is 50 km (31 mi) E of the city of Leicester by road. Stamford is situated on the River Welland (which flows eastward, into the Wash). Stamford is located in the far south-western edge of Lincolnshire, right next to the very small county (smallest in England) of Rutland, which is just north and west of Stamford. (Stamford is so close to and so linked to the two-town county of Rutland that a prominent local paper there is called the Rutland and Stamford Mercury.) To the south-west of Stamford is Northamptonshire, and to the south-east of Stamford is Cambridgeshire and the city of Peterborough.

Stamford is a picturesque little town. Owing to its many well-preserved 17th and 18th century honey-stone houses and stone streets, its beautiful streets and vistas, its good schools, its nice shops and its fast-and-extensive rail service (55 minutes to London), Stamford was in fact rated by the Sunday Times as the best town to live in, in all of England {see this from 2013; also see this 2013 article on how nice Stamford is, from the Guardian, here}.

Stamford AFC wear red, and are nicknamed the Daniels, after the heaviest man in England, Daniel Lambert (1770-1809), who was the gaol-keeper in Stamford, and who weighed over 50 stone (700 lb; 320 kg), and, after becoming the heaviest authenticated person up to that point in recorded history, became something of a celebrity in London and in nearby Leicester, in the early 1800s.

Stamford AFC had played for 100 years at the Kettering Road ground near the town centre. They now play at the relatively brand-new Zeeco Stadium at the Stamford Sports Centre, which is just beyond the last houses on the south side of town. The stadium, which opened in December 2014, has a 2,000 capacity (250 seated). (Zeeco is a company involved in refining, petrochemical production, power/steam, and bio-gas industries.) As it says in this article from the Rutland and Stamford, “the ground is part of a £5.5m development at the Borderville site which also includes a sports centre, classrooms and artificial pitches. The Daniels have teamed up with New College Stamford and Burghley Estates on the development.”

For the 1st Round, Stamford have been given a draw away to 4th-division-side Hartlepool United, at their Victoria Road ground up in County Durham. Here is an article from the Hartlepool, Who are Hartlepool United’s FA Cup opponents Stamford AFC?.


Photo and Image credits above –
Photo of Stamford viewed over the Meadows, photo by Old Phthg at Photo of cobblestone street in Stamford, photo by Travelpix via Photo of a street in Stamford town centre, photo by Aerial shot of Zeeco Stadium, photo by Screenshot of Zeeco Stadium, partially completed and 4 months prior to opening (August 2014), image from 0:16 video uploaded by Stampy72 at Zeeco Stadium – 15th August ( Shot of 2016-17 FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round match (Stamford 2-2 Wrexham, on 15 October 2015), photo by Chris P at Shot of goal scored by Stamford, photo by Jake Whiteley at Stamford AFC official site

    Westfields FC.

Est. 1966.
Ground: allpay.park (at Widemarsh Common), Hereford, Herefordshire. Capacity: 2,000 (216 seated). Opened December 2003.
Manager: Sean Edwards.

Westfields FC are a 9th-level club in the Midland Football Alliance. Westfields are the lowest-placed team in the 2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round. Westfields currently [1 Nov 2016] are in 3rd place in the Midland Premier, despite playing much less games than most other teams in the league (owing to their 6-game-long FA Cup-run this season); {here is the 2016-17 Alliance Premier Division table (with attendances)}. Their current average home attendance is 194, which is the largest crowd-size in the Midland Football Alliance Premier Division (the median-crowd-size in the 22-team league, currently, is 81 per game). Westfields drew almost four times their home-crowd-average for their 4th Qualifying Round match, when 741 were on hand to see Westfields beat 7th-division-side Leiston (of Suffolk), 2-1 (see two paragraphs below, and see photos in the illustration further below).

Westfields wear claret and sky blue. Inspired by England’s triumph in the 1966 World Cup, Westfields FC were formed in November 1966, by some local teenagers who played friendlies on Widemarsh Common nearby the city centre of Hereford. One of the youths who founded the club was Andy Morris; he is still involved with the club and is now its chief executive. Westfields first played in the Hereford Sunday League. In 1975, the club moved from Widemarsh Common to the sports ground of Thorn Lighting on the Rotherwas Industrial Estate, in south-east Hereford. In their 12th year, in 1978, Westfields joined the West Midlands Regional League [present-day 12th level]. In 1983, they were promoted to the 1st Division of the West Midlands Regional League. And four years later in 1987, they were promoted to the Premier Division of the West Midlands Regional League. Sixteen years later, in 2003, Westfields won promotion to the Midland Football Alliance [which is in the present-day 9th level]. That same year, in December 2003, Westfields moved back to Widemarsh Common in the heart of Hereford, in a purpose-built ground (cost: £250,000). For sponsorship purposes, the name of the ground is allpay.park, after, a Hereford-based cashless-payment firm.

On 15 October 2016, after defeating 7th-division side Leiston in the 2016-17 FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round, Westfields FC qualified for the FA Cup 1st Round for the first time in the 60-year-old club’s history. Of course, Westfields had the good fortune of drawing 5 consecutive home matches in the preliminary rounds (Westfields 16/17 FA Cup-run listed below, along with their steadily-increasing home attendances). And that luck has carried on to the First Round Proper, as Westfields got a rather winnable home match versus 6th-division side Curzon Ashton (of Greater Manchester). {2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round draw, here: FA Cup first-round draw: Westfields ‘quietly confident’.}

As a 9th-division side, Westfields had to enter the FA Cup right at the start of the competition, on 6 August 2016.
In other words, to qualify for the 2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round, Westfields went the maximum 6 preliminary/qualifying rounds…
-In the Extra Preliminary Round, Westfields beat Stourport Swifts away, 3-4.
-In the Preliminary Round, Westfields beat Tivdale 5-1 at Widemarsh Common (attendance, 96).
-In the 1st Qualifying Round, Westfields beat St Ives Town 4-0 at Widemarsh Common (attendance, 190).
-In the 2nd Qualifying Round, Westfields beat Highgate United 4-2 at Widemarsh Common (attendance, 239).
-In the 3rd Qualifying Round, Westfields beat Walton Casuals 4-0 at Widemarsh Common (attendance, 349).
-And then in the 4th Qualifying Round, Westfields beat Leiston 2-1 at Widemarsh Common (attendance, 741) {see photos and captions further below}.
Photo and Image credits above – Street-level exterior shot of allpay.park, photo by via 3 interior shots of ground, photos by Antti’s Football Scarves at Photo of 4th Qualifying Round match at allpay.stadium by Jan Kruger/The FA via Getty Images via 5 photos from 4th Qualifying Round match, photos by James Maggs at Westfields beat Leiston 2-1 in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round (
Thanks to all at the links below…
-Blank map of UK historic counties, by Nilfanion (using UK Ordnance Survey data), at File:United Kingdom police areas map.svg (
-Blank relief map of Greater London, by Nilfanion (using UK Ordnance Survey data), at File:Greater London UK relief location map.jpg.
-Blank relief map of Greater Manchester, by Nilfanion (using Ordnance Survey data), at File:Greater Manchester UK relief location map.jpg.
-Photo of Curzon Ashton badge, photo from
-Current average attendance figures from
-Current average attendance for lower Non-League clubs (7th and 8th and 9th Levels), at
-Thanks to the official site of Merstham FC, for club history info, at
-Thanks to the official site of Westfields FC, for FA Cup qualifying rounds info,
-Thanks to the official site of Stamford AFC, for the match-photo and for general information.
-Thanks to Donnaa Prior at the Surrey Mirror, for match-photos of Merstham’s Cup-qualifying win, PHOTOS: Merstham beat Ebbsfleet United to qualify for the FA Cup first round proper.
-Thanks to James Maggs at the Hereford Times, for match-photos of Westfield’s Cup-qualifying win, Westfields beat Leiston 2-1 in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round [with pictures].

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