The Emirates FA Cup First Round Preview

A deep-dive into the 2022/23 first round fixtures, underdogs and how SPORTFIVE helps to deliver the 'magic of the cup'.

Reading time: 4 minutes

Throughout its history, football has evolved and grown into what we now know as the world’s most popular sport. At the heart of this growth has been the constant search for a faster and better game, whilst still holding fast to the tradition and history that ‘the beautiful game’ is so well-known for.

Nothing epitomises this tradition and history quite like the Emirates FA Cup. Standing firm since the very first game 151 years ago, the competition is the world’s oldest national football tournament.

It all started on the 11th of November 1871, when the first round of the first-ever Emirates FA Cup was played, as 15 teams entered the tournament, which finished with Wanderers FC as champions.

This week sees the return of the first round of the Emirates FA Cup, as 80 teams battle it out for a place in the second-round, with games kicking-off on the 4th of November.

Everybody Loves an Underdog

The Emirates FA Cup is known for producing ‘David vs Goliath’ moments, where teams from across the English football pyramid fight to do what shouldn’t be possible and dream of cup glory.

Every year, the first round of the Emirates FA Cup is the first time where teams from the English Football League (EFL) enter the competition and face off against teams that have progressed from the previous qualifying rounds.

This year’s first round fixtures have the potential to replicate some of the infamous Emirates FA Cup upsets from previous years as seventh-tier sides South Shields FC and Alvechurch FC face third-tier outfits Forest Green Rovers and Cheltenham respectively.

Elsewhere Coalville Town and Needham Market, who also play in the seventh-tier of English Football, also travel to League One opposition as they take on Charlton and Burton respectively.

Some of the Classic FA Cup Upsets

Nobody gave League One outfit Bradford a chance when they travelled to Stamford Bridge to take on Jose Mourinho's high-flying team which included stars such as Eden Hazard, Cesc Fabregas and Mohammed Salah. The 'Bantams' went on to beat the eventual Premier League champions 4-2 (2015).
In the midst of a relegation battle, Wigan secured a stoppage-time winner to beat Manchester City as they became the only team to win the FA Cup and be relegated in the same season. The defeat also marked the end of Roberto Mancini's reign in the blue side of Manchester (2013).
In their first season in the Football League Stevenage produced an outstanding display to beat Premier League side Newcastle 3-1. Stevenage went on to lose against Championship side Reading in the following fourth-round fixture (2011).
Oldham beat a Liverpool side which had the likes of Luis Suarez, Steven Gerrard, Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge in the team as the Latics won 3-2 at Boundary Park. They went on to host another Merseyside team, Everton in the following fifth-round fixture, sealing a 2-2 draw before losing the replay at Goodison Park (2013).

The Emirates FA Cup and SPORTFIVE

As the oldest national football tournament in the world, The Emirates FA Cup is a truly iconic competition that has stood the test of time, carrying a heritage and a tradition that has captured the hearts and minds of football fans up and down the country for generations. 

For more than 30 years, SPORTFIVE has worked with the FA and clubs throughout the English football pyramid by delivering branding and signage solutions across the competition.

SPORTFIVE is incredibly proud of the small part we play in helping to deliver the ‘magic of the cup’ and wish all competing teams the very best of luck for the 22/23 Season!

The FA Cup First Round Draw

1 South Shields v Forest Green Rovers

2 Bolton Wanderers v Barnsley

3 Boreham Wood v Eastleigh

4 Curzon Ashton v Cambridge United

5 Maidenhead United v Dagenham & Redbridge

6 Crawley Town v Accrington Stanley

7 Solihull Moors v Hartlepool United

8 AFC Fylde v Gillingham

9 Peterborough United v Salford City

10 Sutton United v Farnborough

11 Grimsby Town v Plymouth Argyle

12 MK Dons v Taunton

13 Ebbsfleet United v FC Halifax Town

14 Carlisle United v Tranmere Rovers

15 Bracknell Town v Ipswich Town

16 Chippenham Town v Lincoln City

17 Sheffield Wednesday v Morecambe

18 Hereford v Portsmouth

19 Shrewsbury Town v York City

20 Buxton v Merthyr Town

21 Charlton Athletic v Coalville Town

22 Weymouth v AFC Wimbledon

23 Newport County v Colchester United

24 Stockport County v Swindon Town

25 Doncaster Rovers v King's Lynn Town

26 Gateshead v Stevenage

27 Fleetwood Town v Oxford City

28 Burton Albion v Needham Market

29 Bradford City v Harrogate Town

30 Port Vale v Exeter City

31 Torquay United v Derby County

32 Bristol Rovers v Rochdale

33 Wycombe Wanderers v Walsall

34 Wrexham v Oldham Athletic

35 Crewe Alexandra v Leyton Orient

36 Barnet v Chelmsford City

37 Woking v Oxford United

38 Chesterfield v Northampton Town

39 Cheltenham Town v Alvechurch

40 Barrow v Mansfield Town

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