The one-year anniversary of the greatest day in the club’s history falls on Monday, May 21 – and we have an event to celebrate it at Mariners Park.
On a glorious day at Wembley 12 months ago, South Shields defeated Cleethorpes Town 4-0 in the final of the FA Vase, in doing so completing a remarkable quadruple of trophy wins and sealing the first national title in the club’s history.
Much has happened in the year which has followed, but the memories of that day will be fresh in the minds of all who attended.
To mark a year since the special occasion, the match will be shown in the clubhouse at Mariners Park from 7pm on Monday.
There will be free food available to supporters, as well as drinks promotions.
On the night, pints of Foster’s will be £2, with Birra Moretti costing £2.50, John Smith’s £2, Strongbow £2 and Strongbow Dark Fruits £2.
Join us to celebrate the anniversary!
South Shields enjoyed a dream first trip to Wembley as they defeated Cleethorpes Town 4-0 to win the FA Vase – and seal a historic quadruple.
Roared on by more than 13,000 Mariners supporters on a sunny London day, the Mariners dominated their opponents to provide memories all of those involved with the club will never forget.
They were always in control, but had to wait until late in the first half before Carl Finnigan slotted away a penalty to break the deadlock.
The second goal was also long in coming, but once Dillon Morse’s header found its way over the line with 10 minutes left, the party could get in full flow.
David Foley added the gloss to the scoreline in the latter stages with two strikes as the Mariners ended an almost perfect season in fitting style.
Club captain Leepaul Scroggins and team captain Julio Arca then followed their team-mates up the famous Wembley steps before holding the trophy aloft as the Mariners won the competition for the first time.
With the Northern League Division One title, Northern League Cup and Durham Challenge Cup already in the bag, the Mariners were confident of completing a near-perfect campaign with yet another trophy.
There were few signs of any real Wembley nerves as they set about their business early and took control of possession.
Finnigan – who was handed a start in the attacking positions alongside Foley and Gavin Cogdon – went agonisingly close in the opening exchanges when he diverted an Arca free-kick towards goal, only to see the ball bounce just past the post.
He was a constant threat to the Cleethorpes defence, and went close again when he got in behind, but saw his effort kept out by goalkeeper Liam Higton.
Shields were unable to make their possession count, and almost paid from that on a rare Clee breakaway on 25 minutes.
Brody Robertson got in on the inside-right of the box and sent a low effort across goal which Liam Connell did well to palm behind.
That gave Cleethorpes some encouragement, but apart from looking dangerous from set-pieces, they failed to seriously test the Shields defence again until the second half.
It was the Mariners who managed to get on top, playing their way into a number of promising positions without being able to find the killer touch.
Finnigan had a shot deflected wide and later had a penalty appeal turned down, while Cogdon was a constant menace as he drifted out to wide positions and brought the ball inside.
In one of those situations, he stepped inside and drew a foul from his defender, with the referee showing no hesitation in pointing to the spot.
In Finnigan, Shields had a player with ice-cool nerves ready to become the club’s first goalscorer in London since the great Len Smith netted against Queens Park Rangers in 1970. His 31st goal of the season was calmly registered as he sent Higton the wrong way with a low effort.
The goal was just two minutes before half-time, and in stoppage time, the Mariners so nearly struck again when Cogdon drove in from the left before hitting a low shot which was tipped onto the post by Higton. The ball bounced back into the danger zone, where Cogdon headed it wide.
The main disappointment at the break for Shields was that they did not hold a more comfortable lead, but they almost put that right within four minutes of the restart.
Foley showed his quality as he beat his man 25 yards from goal before unleashing a stunning strike which Higton brilliantly tipped onto the bar.
Higton also denied Cogdon soon after, before Cleethorpes’ best chance of the game arrived.
A through ball played Robertson in on goal and he looked odds-on to find the net, but Alex Nicholson burst across the area and threw his body in the way of the ball to make a tremendous reception and maintain Shields’ lead.
Things became slightly more nervous as the second half progressed, with the Mariners unable to maintain possession in the manner they would have liked.
However, they never appeared in any serious danger of conceding, and Shields’ superior fitness began to show in the latter stages.
Cogdon had a golden chance to kill the game off when he received the ball on the inside-left of the box, but his low drive was beaten away by Higton.
Eventually, though, Shields could relax with 10 minutes left when a free-kick from substitute Robert Briggs found its way to Morse at the back post, and he forced the ball beyond the line with his head before sprinting towards a jubilant Mariners faithful.
The noise was cranked up as the reality of Shields’ imminent achievement began to sink in, and the players responded as they set about making it even more of an afternoon to remember.
Another substitute, Michael Richardson, received the ball in the centre of the park and then played it beyond the Clee defence for Foley, who sprinted in and coolly finished to score his 34th goal of the season.
It was fitting that Foley would get in on the act, and he was not finished yet.
He scored arguably the goal of the day with a minute remaining when he hammered the ball into the bottom corner from 20 yards before a joyous celebration with team-mates and staff.
The Vase was in the bag and with it, arguably the biggest win in the club’s history.
The scenes which followed will live long in the memory as the Mariners enjoyed their day in the sun on the biggest stage of all.
SOUTH SHIELDS: Connell, Nicholson, Lough, Shaw, Morse, Arca (c), Stephenson (Briggs 56), Phillips (Smith 83), Cogdon, Finnigan (Richardson 70), Foley. Subs not used: Storey, Holden.
Goals: Finnigan (pen 43), Morse (80), Foley (85, 89).
WORDS: Daniel Prince. MAIN IMAGE: Peter Talbot.
Around 13,000 South Shields supporters are getting ready to descend on London as arguably the biggest occasion in the club’s history draws ever nearer.
The Mariners will take on Cleethorpes Town in the final of the FA Vase at Wembley on Sunday.
Whatever happens on the pitch, it promises to be a memorable weekend as the town comes out in force in support of the club.
Shields supporters will be situated on the west side of Wembley Stadium, and as such, have been allocated 13 pubs and bars in and around the ground on matchday.
Mariners supporters will be able to drink in The Green Man, Blue Room, Flannery’s Bar, J.J. Moon’s, Masti, Moore Spice (1966), Station 31, The Arch, The Copper Jug, The Corner House, The Fusilier, The Liquor Station and Thirsty Eddie’s.
Sunday’s match kicks off at 12.15pm, and those who attend will also be able to stay to watch the FA Trophy final between York City and Macclesfield Town, which starts at 4.15pm.
It has been announced that the concourse area at Wembley will turn into a pop-up pub between the two games, and the area in the Mariners’ section has been named The Steamboat to give it that bit more of a homely feel.
The final round of Premier League fixtures will be shown on big screens, while there will be special offers on food and drink, pub furniture, giant dart boards, table football, giant jenga, giant connect four and football freestylers.
Those who do not yet have tickets for Sunday can still purchase them from Mariners Park between 9am and 9pm, priced at £25 for adults, £10 for concessions and £1 for juniors.
They can also still be bought by clicking here, and on matchday at Wembley, where the ticket office will open at 9am for late purchases.
Travel packages for the weekend also remain available with club sponsor Westoe Travel.
One option is a Saturday departure by coach, with a one-night stay in a hotel, which can be bought from £89. Other Saturday options are to take the train and stay in a hotel for one or two nights.
Supporters can also book a day trip by coach at £35 for adults and £34 for senior citizens or children, or a day trip by train from £99. Those prices depend on train times and available hotels at the time of your booking.
For more details, call Westoe Travel on 0191 455 2292.
At Wembley, general admission and hospitality doors will open at 10.45am for those who wish to soak up the atmosphere.
Should the game finish level, it will go to extra-time and, if needed, penalties.
Supporters have been encouraged to arrive early at the stadium to avoid delays in entry because of enhanced searching, and discouraged from bringing large bags or rucksacks, as all bags will be searched.
A list of prohibited items, meanwhile, can be found by clicking here.
Should any supporters need advice in and around the stadium, a team of ‘Connectors’ will be located at Wembley, and Wembley Park station, wearing bright yellow. They are in place to provide support and knowledge to ensure supporters can locate their seat, gate or transport hub.
Fans are encouraged by the FA, if possible, to arrive by public transport. Nearby London Underground stations are Wembley Park (a five-minutes walk from the stadium) and Wembley Central (15 minutes away). On the London Overground system, meanwhile, Wembley Stadium station is five minutes from the ground.
Local buses to the stadium include numbers 18, 83, 92 and 224. It should be noted that London buses no longer accept cash, therefore any supporters travelling by bus will need to pay for the fare using an Oyster card or contact less payment card. A single adult fare is £1.45.
For London tube, road, bus and other services, visit www.tfl.gov.uk. Find train times and fares by clicking here or call 0871 200 4950.
More information on how to get to Wembley is available by clicking here.
Thank you for your magnificent support and we look forward to seeing you at Wembley!