BBC BLOGS - Chris Bevan

Archives for January 2012

Macclesfield experience the magic of the FA Cup

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Chris Bevan | 18:30 UK time, Saturday, 7 January 2012

At Moss Rose.

Everyone loves a good old-fashioned FA Cup giant-killing - unless, of course, it is your club on the receiving end.

With this in mind, Bolton fans travelled in trepidation to Macclesfield's cramped Moss Rose ground on Saturday for a third-round tie with the League Two side which - to use accepted parlance - had been earmarked as 'a potential banana-skin' for the Premier League outfit, and turned out that way too.

Wanderers survived, and probably should have won - they had enough chances late on.

But Macclesfield's gutsy display more than justified my journey, and everyone else's too, and they deserved the plaudits they will get for their 2-2 draw plus any extra cash that comes their way from the replay at the Reebok Stadium.

The chance of a shock was, I must confess, the reason I was there. It was the same for the army of television cameras, BBC Radio 5 live's main commentary team and most of the other inhabitants of the packed press box and media overflow area too.

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Why Wrexham can look forward as well as back

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Chris Bevan | 10:54 UK time, Thursday, 5 January 2012

New Wrexham chief executive David Roberts is enjoying the nostalgia surrounding the 20th anniversary of his side's famous FA Cup win over Arsenal, but he is far more concerned about the club's future than its past.

Don't get me wrong, realism has not entirely replaced romance at the Racecourse Ground ahead of the Blue Square Bet Premier leaders' third-round trip to Brighton this weekend. There are plenty of people with happy memories of one of the biggest shocks in the competition in the modern era, and Roberts is one of them.

As a lifelong fan who was on the terraces on that freezing day in January 1992 when a Mickey Thomas wonder-goal was followed by Steve Watkin's late winner to send the Gunners crashing out, he would clearly love a win on the south coast to add to the Welsh side's already rich giant-killing tradition.

But, after helping to stabilise the perennially troubled club, he admits his real "dream come true" remains securing a return to the Football League after a four-year absence.

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