The 27th January, 1934 is another iconic date in the history of Workington Football Club. That was the day we made our one and only appearance in the 4th Round of the FA Cup, the day Preston North end came to Lonsdale Park…….
North Eastern League outfit Workington had knocked out three Football League sides in the previous three rounds – Southport (1-0), Newport County (3-1) and Gateshead (4-1) but came very close to making their exit from the competition in the Fourth Qualifying Round replay against Manchester North End.
We were 3-1 down at one point but recovered to win 6-3.
A crowd of 16,730 somehow squeezed into Lonsdale Park for the 2.45pm kick-off and that took the aggregate attendance for the five home matches to beyond the 50,000 mark – incredible.
Preston, who included a young chap called Bill Shankly in their team, had to work hard for the narrow 2-1 victory and that was after Workington had opened the scoring when John Stanger scored direct from a corner.
That was the obvious highlight for the Workington supporters but, generally, the game did not quite live up to expectations. The Lancashire club recovered and goals from Kelly and Fitton saw them progress to a 5th Round meeting against Northampton Town.
The gate receipts, from what was a record attendance at Lonsdale Park, amounted to £1,263.
Our other outings on this day haven’t matched up to the excitement generated by the cup-tie, producing a mixed bag of results:
2018 Sutton Coldfield Town (Away) 1-4 After being in general control throughout the first half, during which Josh Calvert opened the scoring, Reds slumped to a heavy defeat on the 3G surface at Coles Lane.
2007 Hucknall Town (Home) 1-0 A day for debuts with Derek Townsley and Joe Kendrick making their first appearance for Reds. It was a winning start, too, thanks to Craig Johnston who converted the first half winner via the penalty spot.
1990 Droylsden (Home) 0-2 Promotion chasing Droylsden emerged the better side to win comfortably at Borough Park thanks to a couple of second half goals.
1979 Thirlmere (Home) 8-1 Reds played a full strength team for the Cumberland Cup tie on a snow-covered Borough Park and proved too strong for the opposition, despite only leading 2-1 at the interval. Recent signing, Kevin Matthews, and Tony Fowler scored their first goal for the club but it was the experienced duo of Walter Gillott (4) and Dave Irving (2) who enjoyed the shooting practice.
1974 Swansea City (Away) 0-1 The long journey to South Wales failed to yield a goal or a point as we suffered a narrow Fourth Division defeat at the old Vetch Field ground
1973 Exeter City (Away) 2-4 A damaging defeat in Devon and the start of the end of our push for promotion. John Rowlands and Johnny Martin contributed to the entertainment but their goals were in vain.
1968 Rochdale (Away) 3-1 Reds’ only Football League success on this day was at the expense of Bob Stokoe’s Rochdale team – our first away win of the ’67-68 season. Top scorer George McLean was amongst the goals with Brian Tinnion and Tommy Spratt also finding the target at Spotland.
- Danny Grainger was involved in Carlisle United’s home win over Forest Green Rovers three years ago. It was via his free kick that United got their winner, Jamie Devitt the first half scorer.