Lions first team return to the prestigious Buildbase FA Vase competition this weekend, beginning the long road to the prize of a final at Wembley Stadium.
Lions are able to compete based on winning the Anagram Records Trophy last season, and also having the neccessary ground requirements at Rowley Lane.
The Buildbase FA Vase is one of the major non-league trophies in football, and has over 500 entrants nationwide from teams competing below Step 4 of the non-league pyramid.
Lions will initially be pitted against teams from regional leagues and then from around the UK if we were to progress to the national rounds, and ultimately a final at Wembley Stadium should the Blues take on two qualifying rounds and a further six rounds proper – a tall order! Last season’s final saw Morpeth Town defeat Hereford.
This Saturday sees Lions travel to the Essex coast at Burnham-on-Crouch to face Burnham Ramblers, from the Essex Senior League in the first qualifying round. Burnham were founded in 1900.
Their Leslie Field ground can hold up to 2,000, but the team have started this season poorly, losing eight of eight in the league and currently sit at the foot of the Essex Senior Premier League.
Burnham do have previous form in the Vase however, having once reached the fifth round, but Lions will go into the match in full confidence and hope to create some history of our own.
Lions record in the FA Vase
This season will see only Lions fourth season in the competition so far, with our best performance coming in 2013/14 when we made it through to the 2nd Round Proper, ultimately losing to Ryman League Brightlingsea Regent.
|2011/12||1st Qual.||London APSA||H||Lost||1-2||D Soutar|
|2012/13||1st Qual.||Welwyn Garden City||A||Won||3-0||D Soutar, B Ellis, TJ Keterman|
|2nd Qual.||St. Margaretsbury||A||Won||3-0||S Sloma, D Bern, TJ Keterman|
|1st Round||Codicote||H||Won||2-1||A Bolle, D Stanton|
|2nd Round||Brightlingsea Reg.||H||Lost||2-3||A Bolle, B Elliis|
|2013/14||1st Qual.||FC Romania||H||Won||3-2||D Soutar, B Ellis, M Sacks|
|2016/17||1st Qual.||Burnham Ramblers||A||Lost||1-2||Au. Lipman|
|2017/18||1st Qual.||Wootton Blue Cross||A||Won||3-2*||A Burchell 2, C Kasler|
|2nd Qual.||Malmesbury Vic.||H||Won||3-1||S Hamerton, OG, Au. Lipman|
|1st Round||Clapton||H||Won||3-2||A Burchell 2, C Kasler|
|2nd Round||Leighton Town||A||Lost||0-1|