September 19, 2023

MATCH PREVIEW | Runcorn Linnets

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Tonight, Chorley face Runcorn Linnets in the Second Qualifying Round replay after Saturday's 1-1 draw, with the winners set to face Curzon Ashton away in the next round at the end of the month. A superb crowd of 907 saw Billy Paynter’s Linnets side produce a fine performance that drew praise from Andy Preece post-match. In a keenly contested game, it took the Magpies all of the first half to adjust to the contest, with Will Saxon putting the home side ahead just before half time.

The second period saw Chorley grow into the game and begin to show signs of the good form they have exhibited of late, pulling level with little under twenty minutes left to play through Jack Hazlehurst. Despite the late pressure, a winner would have been unkind on the Linnets, their display showing the strength of teams in the non-league pyramid and the Magpies will need to pull out a performance if they are to advance beyond this stage.

Since reforming as Runcorn Linnets for the 2006-07 season, the club hasn’t finished lower than twelfth in any season across campaigns ranging from the North-West Counties Division Two up to the Northern Premier League Division One West, their current berth.

There will be many Chorley fans present tonight that will remember Runcorn’s previous iterations, in particular the Runcorn sides that Chorley came up against across two seasons in the GM Vauxhall Conference between 1988-1990. It was during these two seasons that Chorley faced Runcorn in the Christmas and New Year’s fixtures. In ’88-89, Chorley lost 3-0 and won 1-0 and in the following season lost 0-2, and lost again 4-2.

Since reformation, the visitors’ best run in the FA Cup has been the Third Qualifying Round on two occasions, in 2013-14 when they were beaten 2-0 by North Ferriby United, and in 2021-22 when they narrowly lost 2-3 to Gateshead. They will be looking to equal that record tonight.


Runcorn’s playing record in the Northern Premier League Division One West for 2022/23:

5th P: 38. Won: 18. Draw: 9. Lost: 11. Goals For: 58. Goals Against: 38. Points: 63.


Five players to note:

Anthony Kay – Ex-Magpie who played a part in our National League season in 2019-20.

Bayleigh Passant – A truly superb save in the first contest to deny Justin Johnson. Previously with Tranmere Rovers and Marine.

Will Saxon – Scored the Linnets’ goal on Saturday. Signed on this season after recently representing Kidsgrove Athletic.

Joe Lynch – Been with the Linnets before but spent last season with Chester.

Jacques Welsh – Received the Man of the Match award for the Linnets at the weekend. Previously with Bootle, represented Tranmere U18s before.

Stats and information compiled by Martin Ramsbotham are correct at the time of publishing.

Trust Matchday Information:

We are looking forward to welcoming the fans of Runcorn Linnets and we hope they have a pleasant trip to Victory Park. As always, we like to meet visiting fans of the opposition and members of fellow Supporters Trusts, so visit us at our matchday headquarters situated just along the touchline from the fan zone.

We have a comprehensive matchday Visitor Guide which can be consulted here.

At our matchday headquarters we sell:

  • Trust Membership - It's just £10 per year, or you can purchase online.
  • 50/50 tickets - These can also be purchased online here.
  • Pin Badges – Also available online here.

Visit our online store to see what else we can offer.

If you enjoy your match day experience, tell your friends and bring them next time. If you don’t, tell us and we will do our best to make sure your next visit is what you would have expected the first time.  

Part of our role is to ensure the supporters are happy around Chorley Football Club and Victory Park.

Enjoy the game.

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