MATCH PREVIEW: Chippenham Town vs Sholing | Emirates FA Cup | Sat 17th Sept 2022

Published: at 12:00pm

Emirates FA Cup action returns to The Thornbury Surfacing Stadium this weekend as The Bluebirds entertain Sholing FC.

The Bluebirds are in action this weekend. Taking a little break from National League South action, Gary Horgan and squad prepare to enter the Emirates FA Cup. This competition whilst of course famed for being the oldest domestic cup competition in football is also vastly important to those at the lower end of the footballing food chain with a huge financial incentive on offer every round, it is crucial for clubs like Chippenham and their National League South counterparts to do well in the Emirates FA Cup and we start our campaign for the First Round Proper at the TS Stadium against the Boatmen of Sholing FC.

Both sides come into the game following disappointing 1-0 losses on Tuesday night. Sholing exiting the FA Trophy in the First Qualifying Round after going down at home to Lymington Town and Chippenham enduring a long night in the capital, eventually losing 1-0 to Hampton & Richmond Borough.

After wins against Dartford and Oxford both coming by the way of late, controversial set pieces, the game was decided on the night in the same fashion. Noah Coppin getting in down the right-hand side following a ball from Luke Russe saw him charging towards the penalty area. As the inevitable contact came, the referee saw fit to wave away the claims for a penalty, leaving Noah very confused on the floor as to why that hadn’t been given. Hampton themselves were given a penalty following a coming together involving Will Richards as he looked to defend a corner. However, in this instance the referee decided to point to the spot without hesitation and Tommy Block gave Hampton the lead from 12 yards. Then it happened. After much discussion, the referee surely knew he must have made an error not giving Coppin’s penalty due to it being so early in the game.

Photo Gallery of Tuesday nights game vs Hampton & Richmond Borough

The chance came to level it when Jordan Young raced through on goal, went around the keeper and was bought down by Mark Smith, everyone was expecting the referee to point to the spot, even their players had slowed down the play expecting the whistle but no, baffling both the players and spectators, the game was waved on until a booking for Will Richards for arguing the decision with the referee. Chippenham had lots of possession in the game and will be encouraged by the chances made and the performance of the team however, we just didn’t get the rub of the green from the officials on this night.

Highlights of the Hampton & Richmond Borough game are up on YouTube now so pop along and have a watch and decide for yourself if Chippenham were hard done by.

The Opposition

Sholing striker Marvin McLean has made over 500 appearances for the club.
Credit : Southern Daily Echo

The beautiful thing about football is there is never too long to dwell on a result, and this Saturday we entertain Sholing. The Boatmen play out of The Imperial Homes Stadium in Sholing and currently ply their trade in the Southern League Division One South. A lovely little club are Sholing, we have played them of course before in the Emirates FA Cup, making the trip down to Southampton and coming away happy on the day following a narrow win.

Since then, Sholing have gone on to terrific stuff, most notably succeeding where Chippenham once failed in lifting the FA Vase in 2013/14 with a goal from Marvin McLean who incredibly is still with Sholing to this day! Chippenham defenders will have to be at their best to stop Sholing who have started very well in the league with 4 straight wins including a 5-1 hammering of our friends over at Melksham Town. This will be the Boatmens’ 4th game already in the Emirates FA Cup after having to come through a preliminary round against AFC Portchester who boast former Swindon and Bristol Rovers striker, Brett Pitman in their side and requiring 2 games to get past Slimbridge with a 0-0 draw in the first game before seeing off Slimbridge 5-2 after 120 minutes back at Portsmouth Road.

Bluebirds Team News

For Gary Horgan, one of the big positives that no injuries were picked up on a cold, wet night up in London with the surface looking almost set up for heavy challenges and a hard night, the Bluebirds have come away unscathed. Also encouraging for Horgs is that captain Spencer Hamilton and vice-captain Joe Hanks are both looking a little closer to fitness following their injuries at the start of the season. Both hoping to feature in the game against Sholing however, it might be a game too far for Alex Bray who suffered a slight setback in his recovery from a hamstring injury.

We cannot state enough the importance of supporters through the gate for the Emirates FA Cup, with the gate money a 50/50 split between the participants and the big boost it offers the club to get through these Emirates FA Cup games and get to the 1st Round Proper, we need you more than ever!

Please head on down to the TS Stadium and get behind the boys as we seek to once again give Chippenham a big day in the Emirates FA Cup! Hope to see as many of you there as possible, and let’s get into the hat for the next round!


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