September Preview

Saturday 3rd
Trafford (away)

Emirates FA Cup 1st Qualifying Round

Our September starts with an FA Cup tie at Trafford, earned thanks to our exploits away at Penistone Church and Northwich Victoria.

We've been here before...in two respects. We haven't been as far as the 1st Qualifying Round of the FA Cup since the 2007-08 season (when we defeated Atherton Collieries 5-2 on their own ground before falling 1-2 at Dinnington Town) and we visited Shawe View for an FA Cup tie more recently in 2011-12 when the hosts ran out rather comfortable 3-0 winners...after which they were then eliminated by Northwich Victoria. Small world.

We're hoping to give them a closer run for their money this time around.

Shawe View - one of the Northern Premier League's better grounds (image: Wikimedia Commons)

Shawe View - one of the Northern Premier League's better grounds
(image: Wikimedia Commons)

They're back at the footballing level they were for that 2011-12 match: the Northern Premier League 1st Division which places them two levels above us - the same as Northwich Victoria - after being members of the NWCFL as recent as 2007-08.

Since their win in the last round at Prescot Cables they have suffered two defeats so we're hoping we have caught them on a slump. This is cup football; anything can happen.

If a replay is required it will be at Park Road on Wednesday 7th.

Wednesday 7th
Sandbach United (home)

Hallmark Security League First Division

Assuming no FA Cup replay is required then we will be facing another of the new clubs to the Hallmark Security First Division.

Founded in 2004 they started their life in the Staffordshire County League before transferring to the more geographically-apt Cheshire League in 2011.

Promoted to the Cheshire League Premier in time for the 2014-15 season, they were then admitted to the NWCFL in time for this season.

At the time of writing they have made a decent start and find themselves in the top six.

Saturday 10th
Staveley Miners Welfare (away)

FA Vase 1st Qualifying Round

Deja vu.

At exactly the same time of year last year we were preparing to make the same journey in the same round of the FA Vase.

And hopefully it will be with the same result after we came from 1-3 down to clinch the tie 4-3 with a late Rick Whyatt goal.

Result aside everybody connected with Cheadle Town FC really enjoyed the visit to Inkersall Road last year because of the wonderful facilities on offer. The clubhouse is first-rate - as is the fayre that is served - and Staveley's own clubshop, located separately in the far corner of the ground, is also worth a look.

Staveley Miners Welfare FC clubhouse - we like it a lot (image: facupgroundhopper.blogspot.com)

Staveley Miners Welfare FC clubhouse - we like it a lot
(image: facupgroundhopper.blogspot.com)

The victors will be rewarded with a home tie versus Barton Town Old Boys or Grimsby Borough on Saturday 24th in the 2nd Qualifying Round.

Wednesday 14th
City of Liverpool (home)

Hallmark Security League First Division

...and yet another of the league's new clubs makes the visit to Park Road this month.

City of Liverpool FC were founded as recently as 2015 with an initial remit of providing non-league football within the boundaries of the City of Liverpool (hence the name). As things stand that hasn't been possible due to lack of facilities (they are groundsharing with Bootle this season) but their search continues.

The club is officially registered as a Community Benefit Society and is owned completely by its supporters.

They have made a rare start to their life at this level, topping the First Division at the time of writing.

Saturday 17th
Chadderton (away)

Hallmark Security League First Division

From new faces, to the very familiar.

Once the final whistle sounds that will be Chadderton dealt with as far as league matches are concerned for 2016-17, having been part of a fascinating 5-4 win only a couple of weeks ago in the reverse fixture at Park Road.

Andrew Street - we know it well (image: Chadderton FC official website)

Andrew Street - we know it well
(image: Chadderton FC official website)

Recent matches at Andrew Street haven't been as lavish where goals are concerned. We have come away with two 1-0 wins in our past two visits there but, if the other week is anything to go by, a 1-0 might be a long shot....

Last five seasons at Andrew Street:
2015-16: won 1-0
2014-15: won 1-0
2013-14: won 2-1
2012-13: drew 1-1
2011-12: won 8-2 (FA Cup); lost 1-2

Wednesday 28th
Widnes (home)

Hallmark Security League First Division

And onto the final league game of the month, a potentially testing home one versus a much-fancied Widnes side.

Any squad that has Kevin Towey on its roster is guaranteed goals, and that has proven to be the case with him netting in wins over Sandbach United and a hat-trick versus Oswestry. However, these have been tempered by losses at home to Chadderton and Alsager.

We will face them again in the Macron Challenge Cup should they overcome Alsager Town in their First Round tie.

Last five seasons at Park Road:
2015-16: won 2-0
2014-15: lost 3-5
2013-14: won 5-2
2012-13: did not meet
2011-12: did not meet