For many clubs playing in the Welsh Cup each season has become a matter of routine, but for others it is a completely new experience.
The latter is the case for FC United of Wrexham this Saturday when they play in Wales’ oldest football competition for the first time.
The tier 5 North East Wales Football League Division One side travel to CPD Y Glannau, a St Asaph based team which plays in the same level North Wales Coast East League Division One.
It has been 11 years since a club bearing the name Wrexham played in Wales’ premier knockout, which was first introduced in 1877.
In 2011, a very youthful Wrexham AFC played Airbus at the Racecourse, where they lost 2-1.
Fast forward to 2022 and FC United of Wrexham become the latest to represent the town, which was awarded city status in May, in the Welsh Cup.
Until letters patent are issued the process of being a city is not formal. That is expected later this year.
The club, now in its second competitive season, has been extremely excited since they entered the competition, having drawn high profile attention from legendary boxing ring announcer Michael Buffer over Twitter, where he commented on how “Magnificent” the trophy looks.
FC United of Wrexham sporting director Andrew Ruscoe said: “It has been an extremely tough pre-season but this was purposely constructed so that we could gather a group of lads who will go through brick walls for our club and lads who literally just want to play football with smiles on their faces.
“Our management David Hughes and Jason Ratcliffe have been fantastic and brought together a top group of lads, with plenty of experience, who we feel are worth investing our time into.
“We’ve endured lots of negativity online because we had a different approach to how others conduct their usual pre-season preparations but we now feel it’s been a huge success for us as we have a superb group of lads who love the club.
“The morale in the camp is the best I have ever been around and this Saturday we can’t wait to make our debut as a club in the fantastic FAW Welsh Cup. You never know we may even have a sing-song!
“Saturday is going to be a tough game as we did some homework on Y Glannau in the week and they are a very direct, physical side who love to press but we feel we have prepared the lads correctly and now it’s time for the lads to go out and give it their all.
“A bit of belief and I feel we will do fine.”
FCUW will be without new signing, former Torquay United player Lee Setter due to an international clearance delay, but have some fine talent available such as Wolves trialist Chris Roberts, ex-Chester City striker Jim Gray, now 59 years young but still fit, centre-half Daniel Buck, energetic Shane Burke, midfield duo Osian Jones and Kirk Ratcliffe and recent recruit, one-time Cymru Alliance player Jamie “Nesty” Evans.
Ruscoe added: “We want to thank all the lads who have stood by us this pre-season and Saturday is their reward of being involved in such a marvellous occasion and hopefully we can get a result against a very good side.”
The tie kicks off 2 pm on Saturday at St Asaph Leisure Centre pitch.