Phil Wynn Owen kicks off our new web series: My Match
The notable thing about potential giant killing fixtures, easily forgotten in the mists of time, is that the giants usually won! Nonetheless, fond memories often linger in glorious defeat for the minnows’ fans.
Here is one such case: Watford 3, Maidstone United 1 in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup, 10 January 1987.
I was 16 years old. It was the coldest game I can remember, having to jump up and down on the Vicarage Road terraces to keep warm.
Steve Galloway put the non-league GM Vauxhall Conference side one up against Graham Taylor’s First Division Watford, for eight glorious minutes, until a Mark Falco equaliser made it 1-1 at half time.
We jumped up and down in hope…
Sadly for us, in the second half, John Barnes took his gloves off, metaphorically if not literally, and Watford scored again through Falco again and sub Malcolm Allen. But Stones fans were happy – we had briefly led against a top side and were not disgraced.
Below are pictures of the programme, including one page showing where other teams were playing that day. Coventry were at home to Bolton and went on to win the final that year, 3-2 vs. Spurs.
And by the following year, 1988, Watford’s John Barnes had been sold to Liverpool, for whom he walked out at Wembley in the final against The Crazy Gang. But those tales are for another day!
What’s your favourite Maidstone United game? Tell us all about it with My Match.
Perhaps it’s the first Stones game you watched, your first away day, the first you took your child to – whatever it is, we’d love to hear from you.
Become an online journo for your club and send in your article. There isn’t a set word count and if you have a picture that’ll be great. Send your draft to email@example.com