FA Cup First Round Proper match
played on Saturday, 7 November, 2015, at 3pm


In a game which witnessed torrential rain for much of its second half, Altrincham deservedly defeated League One Barnsley with a goal from Damian Reeves. The goal arrived barely 90 seconds into the second half and before the deluge, when Ryan Crowther won the ball thirty yards from goal and advanced into the box. His shot was only parried by keeper Davies and Reeves pounced to net the loose ball.

The visitors had made a decent start to the first half but Altrincham came into it and were more than equal to their guests by half-time. And, after going ahead, Alty, already without defensive trio Shaun Densmore, Stuart Coburn, and Tom Marshall lost their captain and central defender Luca Havern to injury in the 64th minute, with teenager Sam Heathcote replacing him. By this time Barnsley had made a triple substitution and the latter stages of the game saw them mounting some sustained pressure but Altrincham defended well.

This victory may have been Altrincham's first giantkilling since 1994/95, when they defeated Wigan Athletic, but it means that they have now accounted for seventeen Football League teams in the FA Cup over the years, reinforcing their position as the current non-League club with the most League scalps in the competition's history. And, finally, a quiz question... Has any other team ever beaten two separate teams, managed by a father and son, in the same season? Alty have now defeated Gary Johnson's Cheltenham Town and Lee's Barnsley during 2015-/16.

Credit goes to the Barnsley supporters who endured a half hour of torrential rain in the open terracing to support their team.


REFEREE: Mr Andy Haines (Sunderland)
ATTENDANCE: 2,571 (814 in away end)

Altrincham were again without the injured defensive trio of goalkeeper Coburn, right-back and captain Densmore, and centre-back Marshall. But striker Rankine and winger Clee had recovered sufficiently to be named on the bench.

Barnsley started this game after seven successive defeats in League One. Their manager Lee Johnson is the son of Gary, whose Cheltenham Town side had already tasted a league defeat at Altrincham this season.


ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, white socks): 17. Tim DEASY, 20. Jordan SINNOTT, 6. Scott LEATHER, 5. Luca HAVERN (capt), 3. Adam GRIFFIN, 4. Jake MOULT, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 14. Josh O'KEEFE, 7. James LAWRIE, 19. Ryan CROWTHER, 10. Damian REEVES. Subs: 9. Michael RANKINE, 12. Sam HEATHCOTE, 18. George BOWERMAN, 21. Joel SWIFT, 25. Ioannis STOUPPIS, 11. Nicky CLEE, 23. Callum WILLIAMS.

BARNSLEY ( Black and white) 1. Adam Davies, 32. Reece Wabara, 3. George Smith, 4. Marc Roberts, 26. Alfie Mawson (capt), 5. Lewin Nyatanga, 7. Josh Scowen, 9. Sam Winnall. 15. Marley Watkins, 16. George Maris, 19. Ben Pearson. Subs: 34. Lloyd Isgrove, 13. Nick Townsend, 2. James Bree, 8. Conor Hourihane, 11. Simeon Jackson, 18. Conor Wilkinson, 30. Harry White


Rather than switch this game to 24 hours later for TV coverage, Barnsley had refused to do so and thus deprived both clubs of £12,000 in transmission fees. However, BBC World had sent cameras which recouped a half of this sum.


After heavy rain overnight, the visitors kicked off under the already illuminated floodlights, attacking the end housing their 800 or more supporters. Richman soon won Altrincham a corner on the right but this was poorly taken by Lawrie (2 mins).

The busy Richman now won a freekick 25 yards out but Sinnott's freekick cleared the roof of the Golf Road end (3 mins). With the sun now shining, a Winnall shot was blocked whilst, for Alty, first Crowther and then Sinnott overhit crosses (9 mins).

Barnsley had started quite brightly and after O'Keefe had been penalised the visitors gained a corner off Havern who seemed to collide with a hoarding (15 mins). After Barnsley had lost possession to Alty, Crowther did well and got in a cross which prompted strong handball appeals from Altrincham which went unanswered (17 mins).

Havern came over to the bench and seemed to have a problem following his collision but he played on (18 mins). Following two Alty throws on their right by Sinnott, who is adept at using one throw to earn another further up the pitch, the Alty right-back's cross was cleared to Moult. His excellent volley was tipped out for a corner. Davies, whose handling was at times less than certain, mis-punched the corner which led to a Crowther shot, which the keeper saved (23 mins.)

Alty were now having a good spell and Crowther saw a shot saved after Reeves had battled well (28 mins). Next, a Wabara and Roberts mix up gifted Alty a corner, following which Moult sidefooted wide (31 mins). Richman was working hard in midfield before a blatant hand ball by Winnall was not given; he had reached above his head to pat the ball down.

There had been no gulf in class as the interval approached. But Barnsley threatened with a pacey incursion up the left wing though a goalkick was the outcome (39 mins). Four minutes later Winnall gained a corner from a shot from an acute angle, right of goal, which Deasy beat away at the near post.

When the referee failed to spot a clear foul on Griffin the left back was drawn into a foul to recover the situation and was very harshly booked by Mr. Haines (44 mins). Scowen shot wide following the freekick. Altrincham had enjoyed slightly the better of the first half.


In only the second minute after the break, Wilkinson dwelt on the ball, 40 yards or so from his goal in a central position. Crowther smartly dispossessed the midfielder and advanced into the left-centre of the box. His left-footed shot was beaten out by Davies. Reeves reacted smartly to score from close range, right of centre. Unbelievably, defender Nayatanga failed to make a challenge as, instead, he turned away and raised his hand to make an ungrounded appeal for offside.

Barnsley responded with a corner but, as Alty advanced on a counter attack, the referee curiously stopped play for a Barnsley leg injury. After a protracted stoppage for treatment, Scowen hobbled off. A minute or more later Barnsley made a triple substitution as Hourihane, Wilkinson and Isgrove came on for Maris, Scowen and Roberts.

Alty's fans were in good voice as keeper Davies sliced the ball out of the ground but he did better to get a hand on the ball ahead of Lawrie before making another kicked clearance (56 mins).

The lively Southampton loanee, Isgrove, now mishit a shot wide from a decent chance before Winnall hit the side netting from a cross from the right (60 mins) The ailing Havern now had to give way to 18 year-old Sam Heathcote at centre-back (64 mins).

Sinnott excelled as he beat two men and prompted Crowther to win a corner. The three changes had given Barnsley some impetus and, next, Deasy saved from a good chance for the visitors (70 mins). From a long ball Reeves was put clear up the right and won a corner, which keeper Davies flapped at.

Alty were now on the back foot but three successive throws by Sinnott helped to relieve the pressure. Rain was now lashing down as Isgrove won a freekick on the left, front edge of the Alty box. Hourihane's excellent freekick hit the outside of the post.

On 76 minutes, Clee replaced Crowther who had done well. At the back, Heathcote blocked a shot before another triple sequence of Sinnott throws helped Alty relieve the pressure.

On the counter, Alty remained a threat as Reeves was just a pace away from collecting a through ball. Wilkinson now shot wide but was offside anyway as Alty remained on the back foot. Four minutes from the end of the ninety, O'Keefe was fouled and the offender was booked.

Rankine replaced the hardworking Reeves (88 mins) before five added minutes were proclaimed. After Sinnott had been penalised on the Barnsley left, it took a desperate clearance from Alty to keep them out. Rain was still lashing down as keeper Davies went up for a later corner kick. But Altrincham got to the final whistle to record a well-deserved win, all the more commendable for being achieved with an injury-ravaged squad.