Jewson duo deserve FA Cup cash
HOW nice it was to see Stowmarket Town and Ipswich Wanderers gain victories in the FA Cup preliminary round.Thanks to the generosity of the Football Association, and competition sponsors AXA, a massive £7,500 will be handed out to the winners of last Saturday's ties.
By Elvin King
HOW nice it was to see Stowmarket Town and Ipswich Wanderers gain victories in the FA Cup preliminary round.
Thanks to the generosity of the Football Association, and competition sponsors AXA, a massive £7,500 will be handed out to the winners of last Saturday's ties.
And when you are used to home attendances of 75 at around £3 a time it does not take a high-flying accountant to work out the benefits to the two Jewson League clubs who run on shoestring budgets.
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In my estimations it would take 34 games – more than a home season's worth – to bring in a similar amount of income.
Both clubs will be looking to gain another windfall on September 29 when the next round of the FA Cup takes place. The FA is giving £7,500 to the winners of the second preliminary round as well. This is on top of the £1,000 allocated to extra preliminary round winners.
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Stowmarket manager Mel Aldis said today that the cash means so much to the club.
"But it was not our main incentive," he said. "When the whistle blew for the start of the game, the only thing on my mind was to win the game – exactly the same as it is for every match we play."
Aldis confirmed that his players were well aware of the cash on offer. "They got together and felt it would be a fitting reward for our hard-working committee," added Aldis.
"They decided to dedicate the match to them. No thought has yet gone into how the money will be spent. This is up to the committee."
Essex Senior League Concord Rangers did not offer Stowmarket the best of hospitality and the 2-1 win – with goals from Roger Aldis and Matthew Platt – was well received in the Stowmarket camp all-round.
Stowmarket's reward is a trip to Dr Martens League Wisbech Town. "They used to play in the Jewson League and although it will be tough it will be a nice place to go," added Aldis.
Stowmarket president John Bultitude said that £9,000 had been spent on the Greens Meadow pitch during the summer and that the 'wonderful' gesture by the FA would be put to good use.
He confirmed how vital the money would be. "We played Ruislip Manor at home in the extra preliminary round of the FA Cup and ended up paying them £1 more than we took on the gate.
"Add the costs of match officials and other expediture and you can see that we ran the game at a significant loss. The wonderful gesture of the FA to put more money into grass roots football can only be applauded."
Stowmarket, who had won four matches on the trot before losing to Wanderers in the league on Tuesday, meet United Counties League St Neots in the FA Carlsberg Vase this Saturday.
The Saints where beaten 2-0 by Ipswich Wanderers in the FA Cup on Saturday to bring the Humber Doucy Lane-based club their deserved cash bonus.
Wanderers now travel to play Ryman League Northwood in the next round of the FA Cup.