1979 WFA Cup Final (lost footage of football match; 1979)

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Lowestoft and Southampton captains Maureen Reynolds and Sue Buckett with Multi-Coloured Swap Shop's John Craven prior to the match.

Status: Lost

The 1979 WFA Cup Final (also known as the 1979 CWE WFA Cup Final) culminated the 1978-79 WFA Cup season. Occurring on 6th May 1979 at Waterlooville's Jubilee Park, it featured Southampton defeating Lowestoft 1-0 to claim its seventh WFA Cup.


Heading into the Final, Southampton were the defending champions.[1][2] Their road to the Final consisted of beating Basingstoke, Newbury, Romsonian, Fodens, St Helens, and Notts Rangers.[3] Meanwhile, Lowestoft's campaign consisted of it overcoming Colchester Swifts, Suffolk Bluebirds, Romford, and Maidstone Mote United.[3] In the Quarter-Finals, Lowestoft defeated Queens Park Rangers 3-1, thus preventing the latter from extending its WFA Cup Final feud with Southampton that had commenced from 1976 to 1978.[3][1] Lowestoft then beat Warminster Wanderers to reach the Final for the first time in its history.[3][1][2] Meanwhile, Southampton was seeking its seventh crown.[1][2]

With Football League stadiums remaining inaccessible, the WFA forged an agreement with Southern League side Waterlooville to stage the Final at its ground Jubilee Park.[4][2] Around 1,200 were said to have attended, 100 of them reportedly travelling four hours from Lowestoft to support "The Waves".[2][4] Additionally, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the WFA's formation, the FA presented the organisation with a new trophy to crown future WFA Cup winners.[2] Meanwhile, CWE replaced the Pony Wine as the title sponsor for the Final.[2]

The Match

The Final itself commenced on 6th May 1979.[2][4] Early in the game, Lowestoft goalkeeper Rita Fossey stopped several chances, but ultimately was unable to prevent a free kick taken by Linda Coffin from reaching the feet of Pat Chapman, resulting in a well-timed strike.[2][4] Despite Southampton taking the lead, Lowestoft still maintained a strong presence.[2][4] After 56 minutes, Veronica Price broke through the Southampton defence and nearly secured a likely shot on-goal, only to be stopped by Southampton goalkeeper Sue Buckett.[2] Ultimately, the match ended 1-0, giving Southampton their seventh WFA Cup.[2][4][1]

Despite losing the Final, Lowestoft were nevertheless happy with their performance, and were overjoyed to learn they had become South East England Champions after Tottenham beat Maidstone on the same day as the Final.[2] Both teams received their medals, with The Lowestoft Journal noting both teams received positive reception from the crowd.[2] In an interview with A History of the Women's FA Cup, Lowestoft forward Linda Curl praised her team as "probably the most beautifully balanced team I ever played for."[2] She also stated "What we achieved at Lowestoft was quite amazing. Lowestoft was a tiny little place, and we came from nowhere to reach the WFA Cup Final and push the mighty Southampton all the way."[2]


Whereas previous WFA Cup Finals were aired as part of Cup Final Grandstand, the 1979 edition was unique in that BBC cameras were filming the occasion as part of the children's television series Multi-Coloured Swap Shop.[2] The episode would air on 12th May 1979, the same day as the 1979 FA Cup Final between Arsenal and Manchester United, with the episode billed as "A special Cup Final edition" according to issue 2,896 of Radio Times.[5][2] The segment was presented by John Craven, who was in attendance for the game.[2]

However, like with other BBC shows like Doctor Who, a large portion of Multi-Coloured Swap Shop episodes were subject to the BBC's wiping practices.[6] This includes the aforementioned 12th May 1979 episode, with only a few sequences at best remaining within the BBC archives.[6] It is unclear whether footage of the 1979 WFA Cup Final is part of the surviving footage, but as of the present day, it has yet to publicly resurface. Nevertheless, some photos of the match can be found online and in A History of the Women's FA Cup Final.[2]



See Also