November 1, 2023

2023-24 FA Cup, 1st Round Proper: location-map, with fixtures list & current league attendances./+ The two clubs making their FA Cup 1st Round debut: Scarborough Athletic, and Sheppey United.

Filed under: >2023-24 FA Cup — admin @ 11:59 am

2023-24 FA Cup, 1st Round Proper: location-map, with fixtures list & current league attendances

By Bill Turianski on the 1st of November 2023;
-The competition…FA Cup (
-2023-24 FA Cup (
-BBC’s page on the competition…

The FA Cup – the oldest football tournament in the world – begins its 143rd edition on Friday the 3rd of November 2023.
After 6 qualifying rounds, which involved 640 teams, there are 32 teams from all of English non-League football still alive in the competition. They join the 48 teams from EFL League One (3rd division) and EFL League Two (4th division). That comprises the 80-team First Round. For the 2023-24 competition, the three lowest-placed teams that are still alive are all from the same 8th-level league…the Isthmian League South East Division. Those three clubs are: Cray Valley Paper Mills FC, Ramsgate FC, and Sheppey United FC. All three are from the same region: Ramsgate are from north-east Kent on the coast of the English Channel, Sheppey United are from north-central Kent on the south coast of the Thames Estuary, and Cray Valley are from the part of South East London which was previously part of Kent. One of these three clubs is making its FA Cup 1st Round debut – Sheppey United. That club is profiled below, along with the other club making its 1st Round debut, Scarborough Athletic.

    The two clubs making their FA Cup 1st Round debut: Scarborough Athletic, and Sheppey United

2023: 6th-tier North Yorkshire side Scarborough Athletic make their FA Cup 1st Round debut…
Scarborough Athletic are from the seaside resort town of Scarborough in North Yorkshire. Scarborough Athletic, nicknamed the Seadogs, are the Phoenix-club of Scarborough FC (1879-2007).The original Scarborough FC were the first club to ever be promoted from non-League football into the Football League (back in 1987), and the club had played 12 seasons in the 4th division, before relegation back to the Conference back in 1999, then relegation down to the 6th level in 2006 after entering administration, ultimately followed by liquidation on 20 June 2007. Five days later, Scarborough Athletic were formed by a supporters’ trust named The Seadog Trust. They took on the same red kit, nickname, motto and seagull crest from the original club.

The new club was, and still is, 100% supporter-owned. The new club were placed in the 10th level Northern Counties East League Division One. Promotions followed in their 2nd season in 2009 (up to the 9th level); then in their 6th season in 2013 (up to the 8th level); then in their 11th season in 2018 (up to the 7th level); then in their 15th season in 2022 (up to the 6th level into the National League North). That last promotion was led by their current manager, the Scarborough-born Premier League-veteran midfielder Jonathan Greening {see photos and captions below}.

Since 2017-18, Scarborough Athletic have played at the Flamingo Land Stadium, which has a capacity of 3,200 (with 586 seated), and is owned by the club {see photos and captions below below}. Since moving into their new ground, Scarborough have drawn over 1,000-per-game, and the Seadogs currently [1 Nov 2023] are drawing 1.5-K-per-game, and the team is in 16th place in the National League North (6th level).

Scarborough’s path to the 2023-24 FA Cup 1st Round:
-2nd QR: beat 6th-tier-side Farsley Celtic 3-0 in a replay (in front of 958 at their ground).
-3rd QR: beat 6th-tier-side Darlington 1-2 away.
-4th QR: beat 5th-tier-side Oxford City 2-3 away, in a replay. In the 91st minute…Lewis Maloney, a Middlesbrough-born halftime substitute, curled a shot into the top left corner for the winning goal {see photos and captions below}.

For the FA Cup 1st Round, Scarborough Athletic have been handed a home fixture versus 4th division side Forest Green Rovers (on Saturday the 4th of November.) Scarborough Athletic are one of 6 supporter-owned clubs playing in the 2023-24 FA Cup 1st Round {see caption at the foot of the illustration below}.

Photo credits above – 2023-24 Scarborough Athletic jersey, from Scarborough at seaside, photo from Flamingo Land Stadium, photo from[safc]. Exterior shot of stadium, photo by M “AI” F at Jonathan Greening 2 photos: from WBA days (2009-10), unattributed at; as manager of Scarborough Athletic (2023 image),[@safc]. Lewis Maloney scores winner (90=1′), screenshot from video uploaded by Oxford City FC at Traveling Scarborough fans applaud Maloney, photo from[@safc].

2023: 8th-tier Kent side Sheppey United make their FA Cup 1st Round debut…
Sheppey United are from Sheerness, on the Isle of Sheppey, in Kent, which is located, by road, 53 miles (86 km) ESE of central London. The Isle of Sheppey has a population of around 40,000; and “the economy is driven by a dockyard and port, the presence of three prisons, and various caravan sites” (quote from Isle Of Sheppey at en, Sheppey United are an 8th-level club, playing in the Isthmian League South East Division. They wear red-and-white striped jerseys and are nicknamed ‘the Ites’ (for explanation why, see the 1st paragraph at the following link: Sheppey United play at Holm Park, which opened in 2017, and has a capacity of 1,400 (190 seated) {see photos and captions below}. Sheppey United had been forced to re-form twice this century after disbanding (in 2002, and again in 2010). In the last couple seasons, Sheppey have been drawing in the 400-per-game range, and now after their FA Cup qualifying round success, they are drawing above 500 per game. They are currently [4 Nov 2023] in 14th place in the Isthmian D1 SE, although they have several games in hand, owing to their extended FA Cup qualifying run.

Ernie Batten is manager of Sheppey United. Batten has led Sheppey United up from the 10th level to the 8th level (with promotions in 2016 & 2022). He became director of football operations for the club in the summer of 2022, but returned to the manager’s job a year later in 2023. Last year, Batten told Kent Online: “When we started out at Holm Park [circa 2015-16] it was just a field with a rope around it and we’ve gone from that to a very smart-looking, modern stadium with the latest facilities”… “We’ve got the latest 3G surface and sprinkler system, the best on the market, the academy’s starting in September, and we’ve got Step 4 Isthmian status. I think that balance is absolutely key to creating a sustainable club.” {Quote from, 18 Aug 2022.}

Sheppey United’s path to the 2023-24 FA Cup 1st Round:
-Prelim: beat 9th-tier side Midhurst & Easebourne 3-0 (in front of 265 at Holm Park).
-1st QR: beat 9th-tier side Kennington 3-1 (in front of 270 at Holm Park).
-2nd QR: beat 8th-tier side Burgess Hill Town 3-1 (in front of 278 at Holm Park).
-3rd QR: beat 7th-tier side Merhyr Town 1-3 away.
-4th QR: beat 7th-tier side Billericay Town 1-1/5-4 in penalties in a replay (in front of a near-capacity 1,235 at Holm Park). Sheppey United won the shootout 5-4. Jacob Lambert scored the winning penalty, after GK Aiden Prall saved a Billericay Town spot-kick {see photos and captions below}.

In the 2023-24 FA Cup 1st Round, Sheppey United will host 4th-division side Walsall, on Friday 3 November. The match will be televised on ITV4.

FA Cup: ‘Fairytale come true’ – eighth-tier Sheppey United reach first round for first time (
Photo credits above – 2023-24 Sheppey United jersey, from[news]. Aerial shot [2021] of Port of Sheerness, with Holm Park in the distance, photo by John Fielding at Sheerness seaside, photo from Aerial drone shot of Total Power Stadium – Holm Park, from Signage at Holm Park, photo by the Wycombe Wanderer at Batten, photo by Marc Richards at Sheppey Island players celebrate with fans (after clinching penalty kick), screenshot of video uploaded by Sheppey United FC at Jacob Lambert and Aiden Prall celebrate with fans, photo from[@prall_aiden].

Thanks to all, at the links below…
-Blank map of English Metropolitan and Non-Metropolitan Counties, by Nilfanion, at File:English metropolitan and non-metropolitan counties 2010.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.
-Fixtures list: screenshot from
-FA Cup (
Attendance figures…
-Soccerway (current average attendances for the 3rd division and the 4th division). (current average attendances for the 5th division, and the 6th, 7th and 8th levels).

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