Five standout FA Cup ties to look for


With the FA Cup first Round set to take place over this Remembrance Weekend, we’ve decided to look at five standout ties that are worth looking at.

Dulwich Hamlet vs Carlisle United – Friday Night: 7.55pm

Dulwich Hamlet from the National League South host League 2 Carlisle United at Champion Hill in front of a sold-out crowd of 3000. The game, which is being broadcasted live on BBC Two, is set to be a big spectacle as Dulwich appear in this round for their 15th time yet they have never gone beyond this stage before.

Carlisle haven’t had the most brilliant amount of success on the road this season, seeing three of their last five away games being losses. Their last victory away was when they saw off Stevenage 3-2 back on Saturday 14th September. Carlisle do also have the added bonus of coming into this off a 2-1 victory over Macclesfield Town at Brunton Park last Saturday whilst Dulwich come into this off a 3-1 defeat to Bath City at Champion Hill.

Dulwich are known for their hipster vibe and great atmosphere which has been documented upon over the last few years and they will no doubt make this a tough test for their EFL opponents, who could be subjected to a shock defeat if things go horribly wrong for them. It will no doubt make a worse for wear feeling if they have they to make the 600 mile round journey knowing they’ve lost what is a winnable tie.

Gateshead vs Oldham Athletic – Sunday: 12:45pm

Less than six months ago saw Gateshead on the verge of liquidation as they were being run into the ground by Ranjan Varghese and Joseph Cala. The club were lucky to be given the chance to play in the National League North after being expelled from the National League. Their opponents have been slowly rotting away in League 2 over the past few seasons.

Now at step two in the non-league pyramid and lying in mid table, the Heed welcome an Oldham Athletic side who lie in the low depths of League 2 in what could be a massive chance of a shock result to the north east side.

Gateshead come into this tie off a 3-0 victory over Curzon Ashton at the Gateshead International Stadium in midweek whilst their opponents drew 2-2 at home to Northampton Town.

 Dover Athletic vs Southend United – Sunday: 12pm

At 12pm on Remembrance Sunday, this could be a game that Dover could easily win against a Southend side who are now being managed by ex-Arsenal, Tottenham and Portsmouth player, Sol Campbell. The Blues have already made one trip to the south coast this week, where they lost 4-1 to Portsmouth so they come knowing they’ll ideally want to make amends.

Campbell might’ve been able to bring in fresh positivity and ideas to the Shrimpers so far but the former England international still remains winless from all of his games in charge of the Essex boys. And for Southend who face a tough spell of fixtures in the coming weeks, this could be a pickup to whats been a tough season in both the league and cup competitions.

Dover find themselves around mid-table whilst having managed a 0-0 draw at AFC Fylde last Saturday. Dover have done relatively well with cup runs in the last few years and this could be another one to add to the tally.

Leyton Orient vs Maldon & Tiptree – Sunday: 12.45pm

Isthmian North side Maldon & Tiptree travel down the A12 to East London to take on League 2 side Leyton Orient at Brisbane Road in a tie which has everything to prove a major upset in Leytonstone.

Maldon have already partaken in five rounds to get this far having seen off Saffron Walden Town, Histon, Wingate & Finchley, Chertsey Town and Royston Town. They’ve also gone beyond their last best record which was a run to the third qualifying round.

Orient didn’t create an FA Cup run last season when in the National League as they suffered a 2-0 defeat at Maidstone United so they will be wanting a run that could bring a boost to their season which has been met with the odd defeat so far.

Maldon also have the stats on their side as they’ve not lost in their eight league games and they even remain in second place, despite a upcoming fixture backlog.

Barnet vs Fleetwood Town – Sunday: 12.45pm

Barnet have had a good spell in the FA Cup over the last few years despite finding themselves back in the National League following relegation a few seasons ago. The clubs run last season saw them bow out to Brentford of the Championship in the fourth round replay at Griffin Park.

Fleetwood bowed out to AFC Wimbledon in the third round last season and will be hoping to go one better if possible. They do come into this off a 2-1 defeat to League 1 basement side Bolton Wanderers on Saturday and they have lost their last two games on the road with only two victories secured away this season which could mean more of a chance for Barnet to capitalise on in Sunday’s tie.

Here are a few more notable ties to watch out for:

Carshalton Athletic vs Boston United: Saturday – 3pm

Isthmian Premier side Carshalton Athletic welcome Boston United of the National League North to the War Memorial Sports Ground. The hosts come into this having seen off National League side Dagenham & Redbridge 2-1 in the previous round whilst Boston defeated Hednesford Town 1-0 away to get to this stage.

Blackpool vs Morecambe: Saturday – 3pm

This all-North West encounter between League 1 Blackpool and League 2 Morecambe takes place at Bloomfield Road in what could be a tasty tie between the EFL’s basement side and their opponents who find themselves a point outside of the League 1 play-off places.

Colchester vs Coventry: Saturday – 3pm

League 2 Colchester welcome League 1 Coventry City to Colchester Community Stadium. With both teams pushing for the play-offs in their respective leagues and the hosts already having enjoyed a successful cup run in the EFL Cup with Manchester United set to face them in the Quarter Finals at the end of the month, this could be one to watch as both sides try and get their names in the hat for the next round.

Forest Green Rovers vs Billericay Town: Saturday – 3pm

Jamie O’Hara’s Billericay Town travel to the west country to take on League 2 side Forest Green Rovers. The National League South outfit have have reached the first round in the last two seasons having lost in the replay stage of this round on both occasions. Forest Green could be subject to a banana skin result should they not underestimate their Essex visitors.

Harrogate Town vs Portsmouth: Monday – 7.45pm

National League side Harrogate Town welcome an out of sorts Portsmouth side from League 1 for this Monday night clash. Pompey do come into this off a 4-1 victory over Southend which could act as a watershed moment in their season.


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Photographer who's gone everywhere from covering non-league football to covering England internationals. Occasionally write but mostly at football matches with a camera and mono-pod.

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