The FA Cup returned to the spotlight on Saturday with 15 second round matches.
League One clubs down to Alvechurch in the Premier’s South Central Division have been vying for glory and the potential glamor of a profitable encounter with Premier League giants like Arsenal or Manchester City.
There was no thought of the World Cup as seventh-tier Alvechurch minnows took on League One Forest Green – one of six fixtures involving non-league sides.
There was not to be a fairy tale result in this game but Chesterfield will continue to fly the flag for those outside the EFL and they will be joined in the draw by Wrexham and Dagenham & Redbridge.
BBC Sport takes a look at the headlines from a typically riveting day of action in English football’s grand old competition.
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National League in form Chesterfield could hardly have had a better day, short of comfortable 2-0 winners over their Ligue 2 hosts AFC Wimbledon do the third round.
Only 13 places separated the teams in the football pyramid, but the Dons were unbeaten in 10 games and in fine form.
Armando Dobra’s goal nearing half-time put the visitors ahead and they secured a famous win with relatively little drama to secure a sixth straight victory in all competitions.
Dobra already has his heart set on even grander days in the third round.
“I support Manchester United, so United away would be good,” he told BBC Radio Sheffield.
“It was a very, very good performance. We dominated from the first minute to the end.”
Somewhere else, Wrexham beat sixth-tier Farnborough 4-1, while Dagenham and Redbridge are also in the draw after being denied an upset win as League Two Gillingham were granted a replay thanks to an additional time equalizer.
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The lowest ranked team in the competition, the Southern Premier Central Division team AlveEglise, couldn’t extend their sensational run as Ligue 1 wrestlers Green Forest Roads – the revelers behind South Shields’ first-round exit – held on for a home win despite playing with 10 men for over 20 minutes.
Hopes were high for the Worcestershire side when Jed Yeboah Abbey scored 1-1 with a fabulous free-kick that his unrelated namesake Tony Yeboah would have been proud of – those of a certain age will hear Yeboah’s name and still think of the former Leeds striker’s seemingly weekly bid to have all top 10 goals in the Match of the Day Goal of the Season award.
But it wasn’t meant to be as Rovers scored within two minutes through Josh March, with the striker proving truly a nuisance for his former side having also won a controversial first-half penalty.
Church boss Ian Long was proud of the race but “a bit disappointed with the performance”.
“Forest Green were the better team,” he told BBC Hereford and Worcester.
“We struggled at times and I’m disappointed with the way we conceded the second goal – we went out at the back and were sent off.
“If we could have held on for a few minutes it would have given us a bit more energy and a bit more precision on the ball. But we let ourselves down.”
Linnets have their wings cut off
National League top flight King’s Lynn saw their hopes of a dream third-round tie dashed at the hands of League Two promotion chasers Stevenage.
A fascinating first half saw chances for both sides, with a hefty penalty claimed each and respective managers Tommy Widdrington of Lynn and the ever-vocal Steve Evans of Stevenage hitting every ball on the touchline.
But the fight between two teams separated by 48 places in the football pyramid ended with a brace from Luke Norris and a delicious strike from Jamie Reid in five breathless minutes after the break.
Evans said King’s Lynn was “great” in the first half and what he said at half-time “couldn’t be repeated on the BBC”.
Widdrington said he could hear Evans at half-time “absolutely tearing up the wallpaper”.
The “nice encouragement” obviously worked.
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Late and even later drama paved the way as Ligue 2 upset Ligue 1 with two astonishing results for traveling underdog fans Town of Grimsby and Stockport.
Grimsby led 1-0 going into the final 10 minutes at Cambridge United but looked set for a replay when Sam Smith led the hosts level, only for Otis Khan’s 90th-minute strike – his second of the game – to earn a victory that guarantees all Mariners fans will be glued to their television for Monday’s third-round draw.
“It feels good,” Mariners boss Paul Hurst said. “It was deserved. We played well, we played well and we limited them to little.”
Stockport overtook that at The Valley, with Myles Hippolyte heading home seven minutes into stoppage time to earn his side a 2-2 draw with Charlton and a second chance.
But there was late pain for another Ligue 2 side Mansfield,who led Ligue 1 Sheffield Wednesday 1-0 for 44 minutes at Hillsborough, before succumbing to two late goals from Michael Smith.
There was no such drama for Barnsley although they made serene progress with a 3-0 win over League Two Alexandra Crewe.
In all Ligue 1 matches, Oxford United hammered City of Exeter 4-1, double winner Portsmouth lined MK donations 3-2 during Hartlepool to beat Harrogate 3-1 and Wallsall pulled off a superb late comeback with two goals in the final minutes to eliminate Carlisle 2-1 in draws between the teams in Ligue 2.