Haringey Borough’s common attendance has risen from 58 in 2015-16 to 262 this season
FA Cup first spherical: Haringey Borough v AFC Wimbledon
Venue: Coles Park, Tottenham Date: Friday 9 November Kick-off: 19:55 GMT
Protection: Stay on BBC Two, the BBC Sport web site and app, reside textual content commentary on the BBC Sport web site

They’re one among just a few golf equipment within the prime seven tiers of English soccer handy out free season tickets, they’ve a midfielder who has performed in opposition to Luka Modric, and 5 years in the past they attracted a crowd of simply 17 (seventeen) to a league match.

On Friday, Haringey Borough will host a membership document crowd of round 2,500 because the non-league crew look to spring an FA Cup first-round shock by knocking out AFC Wimbledon, who play 4 leagues above them, in a match to be proven reside on BBC Two.

Situated on White Hart Lane, simply over a mile from the place Tottenham’s booming 62,000-seater stadium is taking form, Borough’s Coles Park floor has a primary stand with 270 seats.

The one crew surviving from August’s preliminary spherical, Haringey have already created membership historical past by reaching this stage for the primary time.

Their run features a 97th-minute winner at Brentwood City within the first qualifying spherical and coming from behind in three of their 5 video games. In doing so, the Isthmian League Premier Division membership have earned £57,890 in prize cash – an enormous quantity for a part-time membership who can’t afford to pay a wage to all their gamers.

“We have got just a few contracted gamers – the remainder are on bills which covers issues like petrol cash and shopping for a pair of shoes,” stated Tom Loizou, in his 11th season as Haringey supervisor.

“Even the contracted gamers are on a naked minimal in the case of wages.”

The principle stand at Haringey Borough which seats 270 followers

‘One of many quickest rising fanbases within the nation’

On 26 February 2013, Haringey entertained Biggleswade United within the ninth-tier Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division. There have been extra gamers on the pitch than individuals who paid to look at.

Having spent round £1m on floor enhancements, together with a brand new 3G pitch, Borough took the daring choice to offer away free season tickets in the summertime of 2016 – regardless of requiring £140,000 a 12 months to maintain going.

“We might spent all this cash on a brand new stadium and had no person to look at us,” Aki Achillea, a legal defence solicitor and chairman of Haringey for the previous 14 years, stated. “I banked on the actual fact anybody with a free season ticket would possibly purchase food and drinks.”

The giveaway has been so successful that it stays in place at the moment. Borough’s common league attendance has jumped from 58 in 2015-16 to 262 this season, and supervisor Tom Loizou stated: “Now we have one of many quickest rising fanbases within the nation.”

With little in the way in which of gate receipts, nonetheless, Haringey have needed to be resourceful when it comes to elevating earnings.

The membership obtain a lease for internet hosting a automotive boot sale 3 times per week, whereas funds are additionally boosted by hiring out their £500,000 artificial pitch through the week.

“Just a few years in the past we could not even get a sponsor, individuals simply laughed at us,” 58-year-old Loizou, a former Leyton Orient caretaker supervisor, added.

“Now we have a van rent firm who’re in White Hart Lane. As a substitute of money, they’ve given us a mini bus to get the crew to away video games. We won’t afford a coach to each away match.”

The person who confronted Modric

4 years in the past Georgios Aresti was rubbing shoulders with the likes of Modric, Mario Mandzukic and Dejan Lovren.

The central midfielder, born in Limassol, made his one and solely begin for Cyprus in a 2-Zero pleasant defeat in Croatia in September 2014.

4 months earlier he had come up in opposition to then-Manchester United midfielder Shinji Kagawa when he appeared as an alternative in opposition to Japan in entrance of 58,000 in Saitama.

Aged 24, Aresti is a veteran of virtually 100 top-flight Cypriot video games – together with 43 at Ethnikos Achnas the place he was on a £40,000-a-year contract – and joined Haringey in the direction of the top of final season earlier than re-signing in July after a trial at Barnet ended with out a suggestion.

Haringey Borough midfielder Georgios Aresti performed in opposition to Luka Modric in 2014

Determined to earn a residing taking part in professionally in England, the previous AEK Athens participant hopes his performances for Haringey, the place he picks up round £100 a sport, will result in better issues.

In September, 18-year-old Haringey defender Themis Kefalas signed a one-year cope with Championship membership Queens Park Rangers,