Worksop Town's FA Cup run is testament to volunteers

By James Gordon

Lifelong Worksop Town fan Devon Cash believes the Tigers’ day in the FA Cup sun on Saturday is the perfect reward for the volunteers who have stood by the club during tough times.

The seventh-tier side, who currently sit fourth in the Pitching In Northern Premier League Premier Division, make the trip to League Two side Stockport County on Saturday after reaching the FA Cup First Round Proper for the first time in 22 years.

It has been a tumultuous existence since that day in 2001, when the Tigers lost 3-0 to a Bournemouth side containing Eddie Howe, with a number of financial difficulties affecting the club.

But after spending five seasons in the ninth tier following voluntary relegation, better times have followed at Sandy Lane with the Tigers roaring to the eighth-tier title last term, losing just once in the league all season.

And club media manager Devon Cash admitted the weekend’s trip to Greater Manchester is the icing on the cake for those who ensured the club was around to see brighter days.

“This is a big win for everybody at the club,” said Cash.

“I have been involved since 2017 from a media point of view as a volunteer. There are a lot of people that I have grown up with who will be really soaking in the moment.

“When you think back to the days stood outside trying to sell a programme when it is bashing with rain, the guys on the turnstiles, the people of all ages who have been with the club through dark days and through the highs really deserve this moment.

“It is a very proud moment to make the journey with near enough 1400 people going to Stockport.

“It is a big collective, everyone sees it as a big family whether you are part of the team, the management, or the fans.

“Everyone feels together and that is the biggest thing for us and why we do it.

“The reason why we do it is for Worksop Town Football Club, something we love. There is a real sense of being loud and proud about your town.

“We all do it together because we love the club and love non-League football.”

Cash first fell in love with Worksop Town aged 11 and has been hooked ever since but an FA Cup run such as this will be a first for the 23-year-old.

For others, memories of playing Barnsley in 1978 and Bournemouth in 2001 still live long, though no Tigers fans will remember the club’s greatest day in the FA Cup when they drew 0-0 with Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane in 1923.

A century on, Cash is dreaming of another cup upset and knows his team will have a real go despite Stockport coming into the match off the back of 10 consecutive victories.

“From a footballing point of view, you want to imagine they will put out a rotated side and give us a bit of a chance but at the same time you want them to go full strength and really test our players,” he added.

“There is a real ‘no fear’ attitude about our side, no matter who is in front of them they will still have a go.

“I don’t think there have been many occasions in Craig Parry’s era that we have really sat back and defended a lead.

“It's the perfect tie. I wanted an established League club, a nice away day that we will never forget.

“Those boxes have been ticked and hopefully the last one will get ticked as well.”

Find volunteering opportunities at your local club by visiting https://pitchinginvolunteers.co.uk/

Photo credit: Worksop Town

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2023/24 Fixture Amendments #20 Please note the following amendments.
Dunne deal for Chasetown Former Rochdale defender Joe Dunne has joined Pitching In NPL West Division side Chasetown on a permanent deal.

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