Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Risca United (Wales)

Risca United are a true valleys side, hailing from a South Walean mining town between Cwmbran and Caerphilly. Formed in 1946 out of the ashes of a number of under-achieving local sides, they initially played in the Monmouthshire Senior League, before moving on to the Welsh league proper in the fifties, where they stayed until the mid-sixties when they hit a spot of financial bother.

The club were saved at the last minute when they merged with another local side, Fernlea, with who they already shared a ground. After a few years just ticking over and barely surviving back in the Senior League, the 1970s saw them hit a spell of golden form. In just a few short years they won an impressive total of 13 trophies, including an astounding three consecutive cup and league doubles. In 1990 they rejoined the Welsh League, reaching the top flight by the middle of the decade.

These days though they've found their way back to the third division - the fourth level of the Welsh game. Since then they have merged one more time, this time with local junior side Gelli United in order to ensure that they had a strong youth wing. They play at the cosy little Ty-Isaf Park, and are known to their friends as The Cuckoos -although whether this has anything to do with their knack of absorbing other teams while keeping their own identity intact is never mentioned.

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