Who are Queens Park FC? Nomads’ Irn Bru Cup opponents stand in the way of final four
Connah’s Quay Nomads face one of the biggest games in their history on Friday evening, when the JD Welsh Premier League leaders travel to face Queens Park FC.
Although on paper they face a side currently mid-table in the Scottish League Two, The Spiders are far from your average football club.
A prestigious history
Football in Scotland started with Queens Park FC – they were the country’s first association club , having been founded in 1867.
They boast the fifth most major honours won in Scotland, and the third most Scottish Cup wins behind Celtic and Rangers.
And throughout their 150 year history, they have remained a fully amateur club, and are the only amateur side playing in the professional Scottish game today.
Will their motto, ‘to play for the sake of playing’ – be inspiration to defeat a Nomads side who are progressing towards full time status?
The club’s home is Hampden Park, which was first built in 1903 as the largest stadium in the world with a capacity of 100,000.
Today it remains the owner of the now 50,000 seater arena, which it has agreed to sell to the Scottish Football Association for a fee of £5 million, with the club moving next door to Hampden’s smaller ground, Lesser Hampden, in 2020.
The ground has hosted some of the game’s greats, with the likes of Puskas and Di Stefano both playing there in Real Madrid’s 1960 European Cup Final against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Just four days later, Scotland host Israel there in a Nations League clash, where big names including Liverpool’s Andy Robertson and Celtic’s Kieran Tierney are in contention to start.
Queens Park already go into the Irn Bru Cup quarter final with one JD Welsh Premier scalp, having defeated TNS on penalties in a dramatic second round tie at Park Hall.
Since progressing against St Mirren’s U21s in the last 16, they have gone an unbeaten run, most recently defeating league leaders Peterhead 2-0 at Hampden on Saturday.
They will prove a stern test for Nomads, but their manager and Scotsman Andy Morrison will be relishing the chance to claim a famous win at his homeland’s capital of football.
Although they may not enjoy the full time status that some in the Nomads’ squad do, Queens Park have a strong squad despite relegation from League One last season.
They are headed up by forwards Billy Mortimer and Ewan McPherson, with their defence conceding few goals of late.
Head Coach Mark Roberts is a stalwart of the Scottish game, having played for 11 clubs during a 25 year career.
He has been part of two Scottish League One play off winning sides with Partick Thistle, and Ayr United, and also helped guide Kilmarnock to promotion in 1992/93.