the real fa cup


A(nother) Kick In The Gornals!

Gornal Athletic return for a record equalling second time in two rounds. This time, words, Music and Pictures courtesy of our favourite groundhopper, Graham Yapp at Modus Hopper Random.

Is It All Over

You’ve got a big day out, a final no less. Where do you want to go? City of Manchester Stadium? Hmmm, not really. What about Old Trafford? Well, maybe, but can’t we go to Wembley? ‘fraid not, some beegveegs are in town and they have fatter wallets and they don’t want the likes of you anywhere near the pitch for a couple of weeks before their delicate little waifs have to pirouette around it. But you’ll bring all your fans up to Manchester, won’t you …

2011 Awards – The Joyful Stuff

Our surprisingly successful poll (3,000 votes!) earlier in the year decided FC United of Manchester were the people’s choice for the most impressive team of the season in the early rounds of the Cup. Hythe Town came a fractional and deserved second. Now the losers ribbons are floating around Wembley, here’s our final instalment, our highlights of the year and our First Choice XI team of the year.

Tempting Fate

The playoffs may not be all that fair but they don’t ‘arf produce some great football matches. Dulwich and Leatherhead continued the trend at Fetcham Grove.


In some ways, the FA Vase is the real FA Cup, the still beating heart of the damaged football pyramid. When the FA Cup started, communities were, obviously, more localised than now, they were the sporting equivalent of a royal street party

Interview – Paul Robinson

After Saturday’s warm up of watching our adopted Dulwich Hamlet try to get promoted we’re off to Wembley to watch our kind of adopted Northern side try to win the FA Vase. Again. How many professional players do you know who’ve played at Wembley? It’s a select club. This chap has, twice, and will be doing so again on Sunday. He’s scored too, an even more select band. 2010 was quite a season for Football Pubcast’s ‘Man Of The Year’ and Whitley Bay midfielder Paul Robinson and we had a chat with him about … errr … football … and I didn’t even make any Neighbours gags.


It’s not often you go to a game where there are 350 fans, the main stand is 20m from the pitch, the fans that are there go mental and turn a little corner of north London red like FC Union Berlin.

Good Grief!

Musings on the topic of end of season play offs, a new idea for the future and brief comment on the game we went to on Saturday, Ryman League Division 1 South – Walton & Hersham 0 Dulwich Hamlet 2.

Winner Takes It All

One game left. Take two teams separated by 0 points and a handful of goals, put them on a park for 90 minutes and see which one wants the final play off place more. Add a sprinkling of FA Cup history, a bit of Cloughie, a bit of Revie, some Grecians, some Hove Albion and some FA Cup giant killing porn and you have our Ryman 1S preview of Walton & Hersham .v. Dulwich Hamlet. Enjoy.

Bouncy Bouncy

A tiny glimpse of early Spring sunshine and we’re off out to the pub in T-shirts before witnessing yet another Dulwich defeat.

Panini Scandal

Two surprise packages in this year’s Ryman (Champ Manager) Cup Final. Imber Court has nicely trimmed hedges. The Hamlet fans were immense but …

Whitley Flowers, Poole Wilt

FA Vase weekend. A long trip to Poole for me, even longer for Whitley Bay fans. Daffodils, Fabio Capello, late goals, and the continuation of a quite unbelievable run.


You’ve heard from the runners up in The Real FA Cup’s Team Of The Year, Hythe, already and now we hear from the winners, FC United of Manchester. Sparing us a few personal, honest and thought-provoking words on FC United and his relationship with the FA Cup is Ed Barrett. As a founding member of FC United, Ed has an equal share in the club and an equal say in running it, just as it should be.

To Rusholme With Love

Novel! We have our first ever comment on an FA Cup Quarter Final. Breaking new ground! We don’t normally go this far! Reading fan and esteemed Football League blogger Rob Langham of twounfortunates gets all whistful.

Runners Up

As you’ll probably have now gathered, The Real FA Cup Team Of The Year for 2010/11, as voted for by the fans, was a close run thing between two teams. We’re hoping to get a few words direct from both clubs about what the Cup run has meant to them as a club and a community. If you think the FA Cup means nothing anymore then you should probably read the account of Paul Markland, Chairman of Poll Runners Up Hythe Town.

Whitley [heart] Vase

Whitley Bay, 23 games Not Out in the FA Vase. A legend in our eyes, modushopperrandom’s Graham Yapp agreed to do us a piece on the continuing saga of Whitley Bay’s record-breaking FA Vase run. And this despite us being at fault for sending him all that way north. He really is too kind and indeed too good…

Blame It On A Corner Flag

FA Trophy: 1970s FA Cup Killers and Blue Square North promotion chasers Blyth Spartans evoke strong FA Cup giant killing memories. Gateshead arrive in town with a similar aura from the 1950s. Oh – and a 6 match winning streak to protect. Michael Hudson sets the scene and views the outcome.

Awards – The Big One!

Our small part in the 2010-11 FA Cup is now pretty much over, having been on board from the extra preliminary round we’ve followed the usual slew of stories that make the Cup what it is. Here in Part One we ask you to pick out the Team Of The Tournament, next time in Part Two we look at the ephemera that makes the Cup what it is.

Non League Day
Bobby Robson Foundation