To start my FA Cup Quest – see here if you’re new to this concept – I have chosen a local side. As previously mentioned, the first few rounds are geared up so that the small teams don’t have to travel too far if drawn away, thus saving them – and their fans – a fortune in travel arrangements. So I have picked a team local to me. The nearest team to my address, as the crow flies, is Alfreton Town, who actually train on the field behind my house. But because they aren’t involved at this very early stage, I have chosen the closest team to me who are involved at this level, Heanor Town. There’s also a significant factor in this choice, too – I was born in the town, in a small hospital which is now a vetinary clinic!
Heanor play in the Toolstation Northern Counties East League, Premier League, along with some brilliantly-named little teams like Shaw Lane Aquaforce, Nostell Miners’ Welfare and Handsworth Parramore. I really ought to visit Handsworth Parramore one day.
Anyway, so Heanor Town are my team. To start with at least. Their first match is an Extra Preliminary Round tie at their 2,700 capacity Town Ground against Long Eaton United (another team from Derbyshire) next Saturday (August 16).
Oddly enough, I once played at the Town Ground whilst at Codnor Junior School. I was in nets solely because I was tall. I was rubbish and we lost 4-0 to a school in nearby Waingroves. I have also played on Long Eaton’s pitch for a newspaper versus newspaper game, my Nottingham Post side trouncing our rivals the Derby Telegraph 7-0, with me scoring the last goal. I digress…
Come on you Lions!