FOOTBALL

Who are Forest Green Rovers’ FA Cup opponents? Profile of Macclesfield Town

Forest Green Rovers have been drawn against Macclesfield Town in the FA Cup first round at the New Lawn, with the game to be played on the fourth of November.

Macclesfield, nicknamed the Silkmen, currently play in the National League, the top level of non-league football. They currently sit in second place, with a record of ten wins, two draws and six losses, having finished ninth last season.

Summer signing Scott Wilson leads the goalscoring charts for the Silkmen, notching six times in 17 league appearances.

The Cheshire-based club have lost their previous two league games, losing 1-0 away to Dagenham & Redbridge last Tuesday, and falling to a 2-1 beating by Eastleigh at their home ground of Moss Rose this past weekend.

Macclesfield were formed in the mid-19th century, but played under rugby union rules until 1874. Between then and 1940, the club played under a number of different names, including; Macclesfield Football and Athletic Club, Hallifield FC and Macclesfield FC. The club was renamed Macclesfield Town after the Second World War saw football resume. Macclesfield played in the Football League between 1997 and 2012, playing in the Second Division (now League One) in the 1998-99 season.

Last season the club visited the national stadium for a fourth time, their first appearance at the new Wembley Stadium, where they lost the 2017 FA Trophy Final, 3-2 against York City. They have previously won the competition in 1970 and 1996. The club have seen the most success in the Cheshire Senior Cup, winning the trophy 21 times between 1890 and 2015.

The club currently play their home games at the 6,355 capacity stadium Moss Rose, and have done so since 1891. The stadium’s claim to fame is that Euro 96 winners Germany used it as a training base during the championships.

Macclesfield have a relatively small fan base, compared to other teams around them. During the latter part of their stint in the Football League, the club had a much lower average attendance than many teams around them, with the average attendance during the 2010-11 season being just 1,832, the lowest in both League Two and the Football League. This is in part due to Macclesfield’s location, with clubs in Liverpool and Manchester drawing in people from surrounding towns.

Forest Green and Macclesfield last met in the FA Cup back in 2001, where then Third Division strugglers Macclesfield beat then Conference side Forest Green 11-10 on penalties in the FA Cup first round replay. Current FGR manager Mark Cooper was on the score sheet for Rovers in both the original tie and the replay. Last season, the clubs met on three occasions. Forest Green won both times in the league, 3-0 at home and 1-0 away, while Macclesfield knocked Rovers out of the FA Trophy with a 1-0 win at Moss Rose.

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