Saturday, 20 Apr 2024

The Enchanting Legacy of the FA Trophy

fa cup vs fa trophy

What every team in England dreams of winning is the prestigious FA Cup. However, for those lower in the football pyramid, it remains a distant dream. Nonetheless, non-league teams have made history in the competition with their iconic upsets over the years. For these teams, another chance at glory comes in the form of the FA Trophy.

A Cup Steeped in History

Established in 1969, the FA Trophy serves as the “FA Cup” for teams in the National League and below. It allows them to taste the magic and glory of this historic tournament for themselves. Similar to its illustrious counterpart, the FA Trophy boasts multiple qualifying rounds before reaching the main stages.

The Venue and Format

The final of the FA Trophy takes place at the hallowed Wembley Stadium, an iconic tradition shared by other English cups like the FA Cup and the EFL Carabao Cup. However, due to redevelopment between 2001 and 2006, the final temporarily moved to Villa Park, except for the 2006 final which was held at West Ham’s Boleyn Ground.

The journey to the final is not an easy one. The tournament starts with teams from the 8th tier in the first qualifying round, with each subsequent round seeing higher-tier teams joining in. The National League teams enter the fray in the third round. The draw for this round recently took place, with thrilling fixtures set to take place on December 17th.

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Bromley FC’s Fairy Tale

In the most recent edition, Bromley FC, based in London, won their first-ever FA Trophy title. They secured a 1-0 victory over Ryan Reynolds’ Wrexham AFC, thanks to Michael Cheek’s goal in the 64th minute. The match was broadcast live on BT Sport, with a crowd of around 46,000 in attendance, including famous figures such as David Beckham and Will Ferrell, who are owners (or co-owners) of MLS teams.

The triumph was a truly memorable moment for everyone associated with Bromley FC, from the players and staff to the passionate fans. Captain Byron Webster proudly lifted the trophy at the legendary Wembley Stadium, joining the ranks of the biggest teams in the country who have experienced similar moments in the FA Cup.

Triumphs and Legends

Telford United, Scarborough, and Woking are the most successful teams in the FA Trophy’s history, with each boasting three victories. It is worth noting that Telford United and Scarborough have since dissolved and been reborn as AFC Telford United and Scarborough Athletic FC. Surprisingly, no current Premier League team has competed in the FA Trophy. However, Oldham Athletic AFC, a founding team of the Premier League, will participate in the cup for the first time after being relegated to the Vanarama National League last season.

Among the well-known teams that have lifted the FA Trophy is League One outfit Wycombe Wanderers, who emerged victorious in 1991 and 1993. Currently, the highest-ranked team in English football to have played in an FA Trophy final is Wigan Athletic, now in the EFL Championship. However, they suffered defeat against Scarborough in 1973.

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For more comprehensive coverage and articles on the FA Trophy, visit the Sports section of Pesstatsdatabase!


  • Which teams are eligible to participate in the FA Trophy?
    Teams in the National League and below are eligible to compete in the FA Trophy, giving lower-tier clubs a chance to shine.

  • Where does the final of the FA Trophy take place?
    The final is held at Wembley Stadium, a historic venue synonymous with English football.


The FA Trophy stands as a beacon of hope for teams outside the traditional football hierarchy. It represents an opportunity for lower-league clubs to make history and bask in the glory of a storied tournament. From memorable moments like Bromley FC’s triumph to the achievements of legendary teams, the FA Trophy continues to captivate football enthusiasts and create everlasting memories.