Former Vase Finalist Richardson Recalls Incredible Final Experience

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A former FA Vase runner-up has called the experience at Wembley as incredible ahead of this weekend’s Non-League finals day.

Glossop North End’s Ben Richardson was part of the team who made the final in 2015 only to lose 2-1 to North Shields.

Richardson said: “It was an amazing experience and something to tell the grandkids in years to come.

“For a lot of the squad it’s was their second time at Wembley (as the club made the 2008/09 final) and it was another opportunity to live the dream at the big stadium.

“But the cup run as a whole will live on in the memories for all those involved with the club and the whole squad still has a connection with each other as it becomes likes a family as we went through a lot together.”

Although being a key part of the Hillmen’s squad that season Richardson was an unused substitute at the home of
English football.

Richardson explained why he was only a sub and how he nearly didn’t make the day.

He said: “It didn’t think I would make the day at all, let alone the subs bench.

“I came down with a flu virus about two days before the final which meant I couldn’t train or be in contact with any of the lads.

“It meant my roommate had to move rooms. I was really struggling on the day to get out of bed and on the day before to train at Arsenal and I couldn’t take any part of it, which was a major disappointment.

“But I wanted the lads to do really well and I wanted to be a part of it as I had around 50 of my friends and family on the coach, I knew two days beforehand that I wasn’t taking part which was a massive disappointed, although it was an experience that I will never forget.”

This seasons final will be played on the same day as the FA Trophy final creating a Non-league finals day.

Last season over 46,000 fans watched the two games as Morpeth and Halifax Town triumphed in London.

Richardson believes that having the two finals on the same day is a good idea.

He said: “I agree that it’s a good idea.

“It’s a good thing about non-league football, the final of the Trophy and the Vase is played on the same day as it helps create the atmosphere and the crowds turn up.

“When we played there in 2015 the area behind the dugouts was full but the rest of Wembley looked really lonely. So it’s nice the more people who can get there the better atmosphere for the lads to play in.”

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