Dowse faces former club as Cards start FA Trophy campaign
4:22pm, Thu 12th Dec 2019
Kingstonian vs Woking
The Buildbase FA Trophy â€“ First Round
Sunday 15th December 2019
Woking make the relatively short trip to Kingstonian on Sunday in the first round of this yearâ€™s FA Trophy. It will be the first of at least two meetings between the old rivals this season, with the two clubs also set to meet in the Surrey Senior Cup next month.
For Woking manager Alan Dowson this will also be a chance to return to one of his former clubs. Dowse coached the Kâ€™s between 2007 and 2014, winning the Isthmian Division One South, as well as narrowly missing out on promotion from the Isthmian Premier Division, losing twice in the end of season play-offs. He takes with him to King Georgeâ€™s Field, a very in form team, with his Woking side chalking up five wins and a draw from the last seven games in all competitions, including Saturdayâ€™s impressive comeback win over Hartlepool United, which elevated the Cards back up to fourth in the National League table.
The Cards, of course, have a rich history in this competition and remain, alongside Scarborough and Telford United (both now defunct), the most successful side in the competitionâ€™s history with three wins â€“ 1994, 1995 and 1997. However, itâ€™s been quite some time since the club had a deep run in the competition, with the 2006 final defeat to Grays Athletic the last time Woking went beyond the quarter-final stage. The last three years have all ended in first round exits.
Kingstonian are in their eleventh straight season in the Isthmian Premier, the seventh tier of English football, two divisions below the Cards. Their last season in the National League (then Conference) was back in 2000/01. They are currently in 15th place with 22 points from their 16 matches, some 13 points adrift of a play-off place, albeit with several games in hand. Hayden Birdâ€™s side did enjoy a strong run in the FA Cup this season, winning through four qualifying rounds before beating League 2 side Macclesfield Town in the first round, with their streak ended by AFC Fylde in round two.
The Kâ€™s are two-time winners of the FA Trophy, taking home the trophy in both 1999 and 2000, whilst they also hold the notable honour of being the last winners of the competition to taste victory at the old Wembley stadium. Recent years have been less kind to them â€“ this is the first time theyâ€™ve made it through the qualifying rounds since 2012/13, when they were thrashed 4-0 by Dartford, and you have to go back to 2003/04 for the last time they made it past this stage. Two years earlier they had their last meeting with Woking in this competition, with the Cards winning 2-1.
Jamar Loza will be available again for Woking after serving his suspension against Hartlepool. However, Dowse will have to wait on the fitness of Moussa Diarra, who missed last weekendâ€™s game after sustaining an injury against Chertsey Town in the Surrey Senior Cup.
Kingstonian could field a number of familiar names to Woking fans this weekend, including two former Cards, midfielder Fabio Saraiva and striker Louie Theophanous. The latter is the Kâ€™s current top scorer with nine league goals so far this year.
On the Day
Kingstonian are currently ground sharing with Corinthian Casuals. The ground can be found on Queen Mary Close; the postcode is KT9 1TQ â€“ a drive of around half an hour from the Laithwaite Community Stadium. Parking is available on Davis Road and Jubilee Way. If you are looking to travel by public transport then please check the trainline website carefully as industrial action is due to take place.
There is a supportersâ€™ coach running for the game which leaves from the Laithwaite Community Stadium at 1.00pm. Please arrive by 12.45pm. The price is Â£15 for adults and Â£10 for under-16s with a Â£5 discount for Cardsâ€™ Trust members. Those looking to attend should contact Adam Bowyer (email@example.com) or call the club shop for more information.
This match is all-ticket. The final chance to buy tickets is on Saturday (the day before the game) from the Laithwaite Community Stadium between 9.30am â€“ 12.00pm. Prices are Â£10 for adults and Â£6 for concessions. There will be no tickets available on the day.
The Cards have a fourth meeting of the season with Ebbsfleet on Saturday, this time at Stonebridge Road, with our next home game against Sutton United on Boxing Day.