Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Alternative World Cup - Second Series - #MyClubYourClub

Following the unprecedented success of last summer's competition and the subsequent rapport with Christmas Island, which led to us being referenced in a book published by Penguin, I'm pleased to confirm a new series.  This edition will involve a slight twist.  But before I get into that, I have pledged my allegiance as an honorary citizen of Christmas Island for another season.  Please join their country league on FPL (instructions here).  Help us to exceed their real life population!

Having watched the best World Cup in living memory over the summer with a rejuvenated England team, something struck a chord.  A considerable number of England's players had an alternative career journey to a lot of their predecessors.  They didn't all come through the youth academies of top tier clubs.  Some even went out on loans to lower divisions to attain relevant experience that led them to where they are today.  In addition, the importance of non-league football in part also proved to be essential.  This shows the importance of grassroots football and the need for it to have even more support.

With the above in mind, I would like to become a 'fan' of a team in a low-level division, be it league or non-league, through out the 2018/19 season.  I wanted to shortlist quirky towns or cool sounding names, interesting back stories, randomness, as well as gauging suggestions from my followers.  For this to work, the clubs must also have Twitter handles.

Here is the competition format:

100% decided by Twitter polls on my timeline

Group 1 - 1st August (top two progress)
Group 2 - 2nd August (top two progress)
Group 3 - 3rd August (top two progress)
Group 4 - 4th August (top two progress)
Quarter Final #1 - 5th August (top two progress)
Quarter Final #2 - 6th August (top two progress)
Semi finals - 7th August (top two progress)
Final - 8th June (one winner)

Here are the 16 shortlisted candidates in no particular order:

Hartlepool United -
Northleigh FC -
Dulwich Hamlet FC -
Slough Town FC -
Whitehawk FC -
Margate FC -
Civil Service Strollers FC -
Cobh Ramblers FC -
Finn Harps FC -
Mold Alexandra FC -
Pwllheli FC -
Salford City FC -
FC United of Manchester -
Hanham Abbotonians FC-
Blyth Spartans FC -
AFC Wimbledon -

Confirmed groups as decided through a random draw generator:


Group 1:
Votes: 271

Group 2:
Votes: 151

Group 3:
Votes: 536
Group 4:
Votes: 386
QF 1:
Votes: 459
QF 2:
Votes: 370
SF 1:
Votes: 432
SF 2:
Votes: 333
Votes: 1,691

Total votes: 4,629

After 8 days of back-to-back action, the final arrived and it threw up a massive surprise.  Finn Harps FC and North Leigh FC fought off heavyweight opposition to reach the ultimate Twitter face-off which was packed with drama till the last minute. Polling remained at 50-50 through out the final hour.  Despite a mass influx of votes from both sides they couldn't be split (even with an odd number of votes).  Twitter doesn't give a break down of how many votes each poll option has won and I had no tie breaker! Therefore, I did the most viable thing and adopt both as my football clubs until next summer.

I encourage you all to support Finn Harps FC and North Leigh FC! Start off by following them on Twitter:

Finn Harps FC

North Leigh FC