Royals announce postcode derbies in national cups

By Connor Steel

AFC PORTCHESTER have announced that they have been “drawn” against rival Portsmouth outfits in the FA Cup and FA Vase after fixtures were confirmed by the national football association last week; the Royals learning their pathways to potential knockout success in both competitions as they hope for a cup run that can bolster finances and club profile.

The Royals will begin their journey in the FA Cup with a home encounter versus United Services Portsmouth on August 3; which is set to take place just four days after the teams contest the first league match of 2023/24. They will recieve a total of £1,125 in prize money for winning the Extra Preliminary Round game, whilst a £375 prize is given for the losers.

An away trip to either Hamble Club or Westbury United will await the winners in the Preliminary Round stage on August 17, with the winners recieving £1,444 and losers picking up £481 for prize money. Winners will further progress into the First Qualifying Round and meet higher league sides including step 3; which may include the likes of Gosport / Sholing.

The Royals are further due to participate within the FA Vase and have been drawn against Baffins Milton Rovers during the First Qualifying Round stage; the postcode clash taking place on August 24 at the PMC Stadium. It is also set to be played four days after the same game in the league with winning sides getting £550 for the success / £160 to all losers.

But a home match against either Andover New Street or Lymington Town will await Portchester if they beat their league rivals in the Vase; with any Second Qualifying Round encounter set to be played four weeks later on September 21. All winners are set to receive a prize of £725 each alongside entry to the First Round Proper, whilst these losers get £225.

Organisers of the Wessex League have also released an early fixture schedule for the new season as Portchester look set to play Christchurch and Cowes Sports at home; alongside the visits to Bournemouth and Portland through a hectic spell in August. The full list of fixtures can be seen online and supporters are warned to check regularly for the updates.

PICTURED BY ALAMY (2DR5GEA): Base for FA Cup Trophy engraved with ‘past’ winners including Man Utd / Arsenal.