Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Club News

Match Preview: Swindon Town vs Aldershot Town

Swindon Town host Aldershot Town in first round of the Emirates FA Cup

4 November 2023

Club News

Match Preview: Swindon Town vs Aldershot Town

Swindon Town host Aldershot Town in first round of the Emirates FA Cup

4 November 2023

Town will be looking to kick start their FA Cup campaign with a win as they host Aldershot Town today

Aldershot have exceeded their expectations so far this season with eight wins and three draws in 18 games.

Before their most recent game, The Shots enjoyed a three-game winning streak, with their most notable result being a 1-0 win over Solihull Moors.

With such a strong record to the start of the season, Aldershot have managed to keep themselves in and around the Vanarama National League playoffs as they currently sit 7th.

A lowdown on the visitors:

On March 25th, 1992, Aldershot FC became the first Football League team to fold during the season since Accrington Stanley in 1962.

From the ashes came Phoenix club Aldershot Town, which was formed on April 22nd, 1992, and managed by ex-Aldershot FC centre-back Steve Wignall.

The “new” Shots began life in Isthmian League Division 3 and opened the 1992-93 season in a carnival atmosphere at the Recreation Ground against Clapton.

Aldershot gained promotion in their debut season in the Isthmian League Division 3, the campaign finished with the Shots as champions by a commanding 18-point margin, whilst strikers Mark Butler and Steve Stairs scored a combined total of 62 goals in all competitions.

A second successive promotion (via a third-place finish) followed in 1993-94 together with a run to the FA Vase quarterfinals.

Steve Wignall departed in January 1994 to take charge of Division 3 side Colchester United and was replaced by ex-Nottingham Forest winger Steve Wigley.

Despite a strong finish to the 1994-95 season, the Shots missed out on a third successive promotion on goal difference.

Following fifth- and seventh-place finishes over the next two seasons, Wigley left to take up a post in (former club) Forest’s youth set up in the summer of 1997.

Following a spell under the caretaker management trio of Andy Meyer, Mark Butler and Joe Roach, Enfield boss George Borg was appointed in September 1997 and his first season yielded increased crowds and the Isthmian League Division 1 title.

In 1998-99, striker Gary Abbott scored 48 goals in all competitions as the Shots won both the Isthmian League Cup and the Hampshire Senior Cup.

In 1999-2000, they retained the latter trophy, won the Isthmian League Charity Shield and ended the campaign as runners-up in the Isthmian League Premier Division.

A fourth-place finish was claimed in 2000-01, whilst November 2001 saw a club record crowd of 7500 fill the Rec for the 6-2 defeat by Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup first round.

Following a run of poor results and pressure from fans, Borg resigned in mid-January 2002.
Borg’s assistant Stuart Cash took temporary charge before Terry Brown left his post at Hayes in late March to come to Northeast Hampshire.

Following a third-place finish and a third Hampshire Senior Cup win in 2001-02, the squad was overhauled and, having attained the top spot in mid-November 2002, the Shots remained in the top spot to claim the title and, with its, promotion to the Football Conference; they also retained the Hampshire Senior Cup with a victory over Bashley.

Following a home victory over Accrington Stanley, Aldershot Town remained in the play-off positions for the entire 2003-04 season as well as won the Isthmian League Charity Shield (for a second time) and reached the FA Trophy semi-finals, where they lost to the eventual winners Hednesford Town.

Further disappointment followed when the Shots were beaten on penalties by Shrewsbury Town in the play-off final at Stoke City’s Britannia Stadium.

More play-off heartache was experienced in 2004-05, this time in the shape of a shoot-out defeat at Carlisle United in the semi-finals.

The next two seasons were disappointing for the Shots, whilst the only silverware came by way of a fifth County Cup in 2006-07.

Gary Waddock was appointed as Aldershot Town manager in May 2007, whilst Martin Kuhl stayed on as his assistant.

The Shots won the Conference Premier title by drawing 1-1 on an emotional night in Exeter, they finished the 2007-08 season with an 18-match unbeaten run and two divisional records: 31 wins and 101 points.

A “double” was achieved as a 3-3 extra time draw against Rushden and Diamonds at the Recreation Ground was followed by a win in the shoot-out to claim the Setanta Shield.

Sixteen years after the quest had begun, the town of Aldershot had a Football League side to cheer again.

A club record £130,000 was received from Crewe Alexandra for winger Joel Grant in the summer of 2008.

The club finished a respectable thirteenth in League 2 in 2008-09.

Aldershot Town gained nationwide attention in 2011-12 when Premier League giants Manchester United visited the EBB Stadium for a League Cup fourth-round tie.

Former Rotherham United boss in that same season but could not stop the Shots return to the Conference League.

On May 2nd, 2013, just five days after their relegation from League 2, Aldershot Town officially entered administration with reported debts of £1.4 million.

Following a period of uncertainty over the club’s survival, which led to the departure of most of the playing staff and numerous redundancies behind the scenes, the club exited administration under the auspices of a CVA on July 30th, with a consortium led by former chairman Shahid Azeem taking ownership of the club on August 1st.

The Shots began the 2013-14 season with a 10-point deduction as a punishment for the entry into administration.

On July 31st, 2014, Aldershot Town announced that they had paid off all their debts, which enabled them to exit the auspices of the CVA after just 12 months.

Even though the fans’ expectation levels were low, the 2014-15 campaign still yielded very little joy. The only real highlight was the 1-0 victory over League 2 side Portsmouth at home in an FA Cup first-round replay following a well-deserved 2-2 draw at Fratton Park.

In May 2016 Gary Waddock became the first-ever Shots boss to return, which ultimately led to the Shots starting a campaign with a higher level of hope than had been seen for many a season.

Having retained most of his squad, Waddock entered 2017-18 with optimism. The squad picked up where they left off and spent most of the season challenging for the title, to which they would have playoff heartbreak again.

The Shots are currently sitting 7th in the National League as they hope for yet the possibility of another League Two return.


2008/09: Aldershot Town 2-2 Swindon Town (Swindon won 7-6 on pens)

2010/11: Swindon Town 2-0 Aldershot Town

2010/11: Aldershot Town 2-1 Swindon Town


Manager: Tommy Widdrington

The 51-year-old enjoyed a long career in the Football League with an abundance of Premier League appearances with Southampton.

In his non-playing career, he spent five years as Manager of Eastbourne Borough and before joining Kings Lynn in December 2021, had a few roles at Bristol Rovers during three years.

One to watch: Josh Stokes

A youngster who has burst onto the scene in the National League this year, with 8 goals in 17 appearances, making him a participant in 25% of Aldershot’s goals this season.

After emerging through the youth rankings at AFC Sudbury, Stokes is now enjoying his football at Aldershot and will look to use his trickery to cause serious problems today.

Advertisement block

iFollow Next Match Tickets Account