Tag: Kingstonian

Wimbledon’s Return Home & The Future of Kingstonian

Wimbledon, then, are going home. Almost a quarter of a century after the old Wimbledon Football Club bade farewell to Plough Lane at the end of the 1990/91 season, on Thursday night planning permission was unanimously granted for a new stadium to be built on the site of the Wimbledon greyhound stadium, a short walk from the site of the old ground. It’s a significant victory for the club, which has played out the last thirteen years of its history in nearby Norbiton, but it’s a victory that comes at a cost, and that cost is a home for...

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Alan Dowson: A Manager To Remember

Yes… yes… Murphy’s on about bloody Kingstonian again. But this one’s important. No…really… It may not seem like much of a legacy, I grant you. But when Isthmian League Kingstonian played out a nothing final game of the 2011/12 season, it highlighted just how few such games there had been in manager Alan Dowson’s seven-and-a-bit years at Kingsmeadow, which came to an end last week. Seasoned Ks watchers used to often joke about games having “an end-of-season feel” to them…in mid-September. And it would often be all-too-true.  So for Dowson to virtually eliminate the concept was a huge achievement, alongside the fact that he left Kingstonian – on-field and off – in a demonstrably better state than that in which he found it. Dowson took over a team drifting in the lower-mid reaches of Ryman Division One South and left one which finished second in the Ryman Premier and, if kept together to any significant degree, will surely among the favourites for promotion from it next season. Superficially, that represents solid but unspectacular progress.  However, Dowson, and those he recruited to work with him, did more than that. He re-fashioned and rebuilt a sense of a proper football “club.” This had been lacking for years at Ks, for historical reasons with which I’ll not bore you here, and is something more tangible and important to football at our level....

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Promotion Play-off Places – The Ryman Race

The EPL and La Liga may be going down to the proverbial “wire” but they’ve had nothing on the race to follow Wealdstone into the Conference South. Here, Mark Murphy offers a Kingstonian perspective on the titanic tussle to leave the Isthmian League behind… at least for a bit. It was a confusing text. Where there was usually a timeous score update from fellow Kingstonian fan Phil, I was reading words like “replacement,” “outfield” and “Cronin.” By the time I’d joined the jumble together, my football-watching world had changed. Kingstonian (Ks) were playing at recently-confirmed (and worthy) Ryman Isthmian...

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The FA Cup Second Round: Death Or Glory

Kingstonian’s recent FA Cup record, a dictionary definition of ‘dismal’, has instigated a little ritual in the Non-League Paper offices where I work on Saturday evenings as a sub-editor. “Could you do an FA Cup page, Mark?” my boss will ask. And if it is any time after the second qualifying round, I will feign some sort of visual or audible surprise that the competition “is still going.” It was not always this way. While Ks and the second qualifying round are increasingly distant cousins, there was a time, not so long ago, when the second round proper was a regular, genuine prospect. And we actually made it twice, in 1994 and 2000. For non-league teams’ fans, the second round draw presents mixed emotions. Once their team has made the competition proper, most fans would probably want a home draw against a top Division One side, or an away trip to a slightly fallen giant in a Premier League ground (e.g.: Wolverhampton Wanderers, Sheffield United).  In the second round, though, a home tie against fellow non-leaguers is a way more enticing prospect, coming as it does with a real opportunity to reach the third round, be paired with a Premier League team’s second string and make a shedload of cash from the 40% share of the gate… er… I mean, sample the true “magic of the FA Cup.” Yet...

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Tales From A Mickey Mouse Cup

The London Senior Cup doesn’t quite have the stature that it used to have, but it still stirs up something primeval in the supporters of the teams that make it to its final.

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