Sport Walthamstow

Out but not down

David O’Driscoll on Stow FC’s rude awakening from their FA Cup dreams

Walthamstow FC at their away win against Welwyn Garden City (credit: Andrzej Perkins)
Walthamstow FC at their away win against Welwyn Garden City (credit: Andrzej Perkins)

The FA Cup haunts the dreams of most football fans, league and non-league supporters alike. Indeed one of the truly great novels about football, JL Carr’s How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won the F.A. Cup, is an account of a fictional village team somehow making it to – and winning – the final at Wembley.

Sadly, Stow supporters will not be taking the Metropolitan line to Wembley next May. The team was knocked out in the first qualifying round, losing 2-1 to their local rivals Buckhurst Hill. It was a hard-fought game, with Stow on top for the majority of the match and with a wonderful goal from star performer Connor Scully.

However, though our shot at the cup is on hold for another year, the management team was far from downcast, focusing instead on the new Southern league season ahead. Co-manager Terry Spillane told me: “We are under no illusions as to how tough it will be, it’s a level up obviously from the Essex Senior league, but I believe we are ready.


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“We’ve kept a large amount of the squad from last season, which we felt was important, but just as importantly we’ve also added some youth and new experienced players.

“We’re really looking forward to seeing and hearing the Stow fans in full voice. As usual, they will play an important role for the team this season, and I know the players new and old can’t wait to play in front of them.”

The new campaign got off to a flying start with a fine opening away win against Welwyn Garden City, who finished fifth in the league the previous year. The games will be coming thick and fast for Stow now that the season has started; unlike in the professional leagues, there will be no break for the boys when the World Cup starts in November in Qatar.

If that festival of football is not living up to expectations and local football fans are missing the match day experience, I am sure you will be welcome down at the Wadham Lodge.


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