With the help of Phil Annets from FACupFactfile, the JEP can reveal that the Islanders’ 10-1 extra-preliminary-round triumph was the best result for a first-timer since Walton & Hersham beat Epsom Town 11-0 on their opening appearance in 1945. Just ten other clubs in the tournament’s 150-year history, including Walton, have ever scored ten or more on their debut.
‘To get a repeat of that record after almost 80 years is amazing,’ said Bulls chairman Russell Le Feuvre.
‘Jersey has waited 150 years for the FA Cup to come to the Island and the players and management were desperate to make the Island proud on Saturday. The way they approached the game ... they were so hungry and enthusiastic to give it their all.
‘I don’t think anyone ever thought it was going to be 10-1. All credit to Horsham because they were really gracious in defeat.
‘The Island of Jersey is turning heads in terms of national recognition and for the football community here it’s absolutely amazing.’
Bulls’ victory secured a preliminary-round trip to Newhaven FC on Saturday 21 August – a tie which will not feature a replay following an agreement between the two ninth-tier clubs. Gary Freeman’s men would have faced a visit to Horsham if Saturday’s clash had ended in a draw, but it is understood that Bulls will call for extra-time and penalties for any away cup draws.
‘We’re playing the game to a conclusion because we don’t want them coming to Jersey on a Tuesday night and having to stay overnight,’ Le Feuvre explained. ‘We, and they, don’t want to take the risk of them being on the Island if they don’t need to be, because if any of them test positive [for Covid] they’d have to be here for ten days.'
Finances may also have played a key part in the decision, given that the Bulls have to cover all travel expenses for visiting clubs. Horsham’s journey to Springfield cost approximately £230 per head, totalling in excess of £4,000. And, under FA regulations for the FA Cup, half of the total gate receipts must be handed to the away side.
Full story in Tuesday's JEP.
FACupFactfile’s book, “FA Cup 150” – featuring facts and stats from the last 150 years – is available to buy now. Visit @FACupFactfile on Twitter or www.facupfactfile.co.uk.