Hashtag United F.C.

Last updated
Hashtag United
Hashtag United.png
Full nameHashtag United Football Club
Nickname(s)The Tags
FoundedMarch 2016;5 years ago (March 2016)
GroundLen Salmon Stadium, Pitsea
Capacity2,661 (300 seated) [1]
ChairmanSpencer Owen Carmichael-Brown [2]
ManagerJay Devereux
League Isthmian League North Division
2020–21 Essex Senior League (promoted)
Website Club website
Soccerball current event.svg Current season

Hashtag United Football Club is a semi-professional football club based in Pitsea, Essex, England. They are currently members of the Isthmian League North Division and play at the Len Salmon Stadium.

Contents

Founded in 2016 by YouTube personality Spencer Owen, the club originally played exhibition matches against professional football clubs' staff teams, Sunday league teams and non-league teams. The games were filmed and highlights were uploaded to their YouTube channel, where they quickly gained a significant online following. In 2017, Spencer Owen began talks with the FA over the possibility of Hashtag joining the non-league pyramid. The club subsequently entered the league system at the beginning of the 2018–19 season, joining the Eastern Counties League.

History

Hashtag United Football Club was formed in March 2016 by Spencer Owen Carmichael-Brown, a football YouTuber who went by the name of Spencer Owen or Spencer FC. Carmichael-Brown had begun making YouTube videos in 2013 as a student at the University of Reading, and the team initially consisted of friends from school and university. [3]

From their foundation, the team primarily played five, seven and eleven-a-side exhibition matches, which were filmed and uploaded to their YouTube channel. By September 2016, the team's Instagram account had over 100,000 followers, their Twitter account 41,000, and a 'penalty challenge' video uploaded to YouTube had accumulated over one million views. Hashtag United played various teams including a Comedians XI whom they beat 19–1, Google, the GB Deaf Team, Barawa and a Manchester City staff team, with opponents fielding former professional footballers such as Paul Dickov, Graeme Le Saux and Ray Parlour, and celebrities including Omid Djalili. At one point in 2016, the club was rumoured to be interested in signing professional footballer Adebayo Akinfenwa. [3] In 2017 the club won the EE Wembley Cup, a competition that Carmichael-Brown had created in 2015. [4] The team included Scott Pollock, who went on to sign professional terms with Northampton Town. [5]

In early 2018, Chelsea player and Spanish international César Azpilicueta invested in the club and became a co-owner. Ahead of the 2018–19 season, the club joined the English football league system, initially being placed in Division One of the Spartan South Midlands League, before being moved to the Eastern Counties League after appealing that it was more suited to their Essex roots. [6] After joining the pyramid, Carmichael-Brown stepped down as manager and was replaced by former East Thurrock United assistant manager Jay Devereux. Their first competitive match was a 3–2 away loss to Little Oakley on 4 August 2018. [7] The club's first league season saw them reach the semi-finals of Division One Knock-Out Cup. [8] They went on to win the Division One South title, earning promotion to the Essex Senior League. [9] The 2019–20 season was abandoned due to the COVID-19 pandemic with the club second in the league, a point behind the leaders and with three matches in hand. After the 2020–21 season was also curtailed due to the pandemic, at which point Hashtag United were top of the league, the club was promoted to the North Division of the Isthmian League based on the points per game accumulated over the two abandoned seasons. [10] [11] During their two seasons in the Essex Senior League, the club won 96 points from 38 games. [12]

Men's Season-by-season record

SeasonLeagueLevelPosition FA Cup FA Vase Notes
2018–19 Eastern Counties League Division One South101/19Promoted
2019–20 Essex Senior League 9 Second qualifying round Season abandoned
2020–21 Essex Senior League 9 Second qualifying round Second round Season curtailed, promoted

Other teams

The club currently operates a reserve and development mens side as well as a number of development men and womans youth teams. [13] [14] The youth section of the club was merged with Forest Glade for the start of the 2020–21 season. [15] [16] In April 2020 the club announced that they would have a women's team, Hashtag United Women, from the start of the 2020–21 season as a result of a merger with AFC Basildon. [17] [18] [19] The women's team plays in the FA Women's National League, the fourth tier. [20] The club also has an eSports team. [21]

The club operates a Sunday league team, which was established in 2017 under the name West Oviedo and joined Division Two of the Brentwood Sunday League. [22] They were runners-up in their first season and were promoted to Division One. They went on to win Division One in 2018–19. [23] The club also had a team named Hashtag Academy that played in the seven-a-side Next Level Football League. [24]

Colours and badge

Hashtag United's colours are yellow and blue. [2] The club's first kit was a yellow shirt, with blue sleeves, shorts and yellow socks. In January 2017, the club signed a kit deal with Umbro until the end of 2018. This saw the club's colours changed to blue, with yellow streaks down the side of the shorts. The club's first shirt sponsor was EE. [25] From 2017–18, the shirt sponsor was online game Top Eleven. [26] The online gambling company 188 Bet were briefly the sleeve sponsor of the club. Ahead of the 2018–19 season, the club signed a new kit deal with Adidas, which saw the club's home shirt returned to the traditional yellow and blue they had originally worn. [27] Ahead of the 2021–22 season, the club signed a new five–year kit deal with Hummel. [28] This saw the kit's colours reversed again to be blue shirt with yellow sleeves, blue shorts, and yellow socks. The away kit was predominantly white and black, featuring a blue lightning bolt design. The sponsor of the men's shirts was initially kept a mystery, with the shirts instead featuring a QR code that could be scanned to find clues about the upcoming sponsor. The women's team were sponsored by food chain TGI Fridays. [29]

The club's badge is yellow and blue, with the club's name emblazoned on the horizontal lines of a hashtag symbol.

Kit history
PeriodKit manufacturerShirt Sponsor
2017 Umbro EE Limited
2017–2018 Top Eleven Football Manager
2018–2021 Adidas Football Manager
2021– Hummel Sponsor TBC (Men's) / TGI Fridays (Women's)

Stadium

After joining the Eastern Counties League, the club began playing at the Coles Park Stadium, groundsharing with Haringey Borough. [30] In April 2019, following promotion to the Essex Senior League, Hashtag United announced that the club would move to Tilbury's Chadfields for the 2019–20 season. [31] In March 2020 the club stated that they would move to the Len Salmon Stadium, home of Bowers & Pitsea, for the 2020–21 season. [32] The women's team plays at Canvey Island's Park Lane ground.

Current squad

As of 8 June 2021 [33]

Men's team

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

Pos.NationPlayer
GK Flag of England.svg  ENG Anthony Page
GK Flag of England.svg  ENG Jamie Jackson
GK Flag of England.svg  ENG Tim Pitman
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Luis Berkane
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Sam Byles
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Ryan Cosson
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Jack Harrison(captain)
DF Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  WAL Reece Hewitt
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Jamie Hursit
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Ryan O'Rawe
DF Flag of Montserrat.svg  MSR Simon Peddie
DF Flag of England.svg  ENG Farai Tsingano
DF Flag of Cyprus.svg  CYP Tom Williams
Pos.NationPlayer
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Matt Carter
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Ross Gleed
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Lee Hursit
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Albie Keith
MF Flag of England.svg  ENG Kris Newby
MF Flag of Germany.svg  GER Jesse Waller-Lassen
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Toby Aromolaran
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Joe Gregory
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Kiernan Hughes-Mason
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Harry Honesty
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG Neil Richmond
FW Flag of England.svg  ENG George Smith

Women's team

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

Pos.NationPlayer
GK Flag placeholder.svg Imogen Riches
DF Flag placeholder.svg Mollie Debell
DF Flag placeholder.svg Grace Gillard
DF Flag placeholder.svg Maddie Thomas
MF Flag placeholder.svg Gemma Abela
MF Flag placeholder.svg Cerys Adams
Pos.NationPlayer
MF Flag placeholder.svg Sophie Kelly
MF Flag placeholder.svg Stef Paci
FW Flag placeholder.svg Jodie Osborne
FW Flag placeholder.svg Holly Turner
FW Flag placeholder.svg Kelly Wealthall

Staff

PositionName [34] [35]
Co-ownersSpencer Carmichael-Brown, Alex Osipczak, César Azpilicueta
ChairmanSpencer Carmichael-Brown
Commercial DirectorSeb Carmichael-Brown
Operations DirectorNeil Smythe
Men's First Team ManagerJay Devereux
Men's Assistant Manager Joe Keith
Men's Coach Tom Williams
Men's Goalkeeping CoachTony Tucker
Men's Reserve Team Manager Kiernan Hughes-Mason
Men's Reserve Team Assistant ManagerPaul Prosser
Men's Development Team ManagerDennis Simpson
Women's First Team ManagerJason Stephens
Women's Assistant ManagerCraig Davidson
Women's CoachWayne Rothon
Women's Reserve Team ManagerMarc Wilson
Women's Reserve Team Assistant ManagerWill Brogan
Women’s Development Team ManagerJack Costin
Women's Ambassador Siobhan Chamberlain
PhysiotherapistsSteve Carmichael-Brown, Will Slaughter, Matthew Feyissa and Alan Richards
KitmanMikey Rumin
Director of Youth FootballDerrick Pearson

Honours

See also

Notes

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    References

    1. Club Information Bowers & Pitsea F.C.
    2. 1 2 Hashtag United Eastern Counties League
    3. 1 2 Bysouth, Alex (6 September 2016). "Hashtag United & the YouTube generation: Football's future?". BBC News. Retrieved 8 August 2018.
    4. EE scales up Wembley Cup experience to reach new audiences Campaign, 27 February 2019
    5. Scott Pollock: Ex-Hashtag United player swaps season ticket for spot in Northampton side BBC Sport, 21 January 2019
    6. Hashtag United: YouTube team can 'bring new fans' to non-league game BBC Sport, 1 June 2018
    7. Hashtag United have conquered YouTube and non-league is next: behind the scenes of a phenomenon FourFourTwo, 16 November 2018
    8. First Division Knock Out Cup 2018/19 FA Full Time
    9. Hashtag United: YouTube side win title in debut non-league season BBC Sport, 18 April 2019
    10. "EXPLAINED: The 2021-22 Non-League restructure". The Non-League Paper. The Football Association. 12 April 2021. Retrieved 18 May 2021.
    11. "National League System Club Allocations – Steps 1 To 4, Season 2021-22 (At 17 May 2021)" (PDF). The Football Association. 17 May 2021. Retrieved 18 May 2021.
    12. "Hashtag United promotion delights manager Jay Devereux". The Non League Paper. 23 May 2021. Retrieved 28 May 2021.
    13. "The Future of Hashtag United Football Club". YouTube. Retrieved 28 August 2020.
    14. "It's match day weekend...and it's huuuge". Hashtag United on Twitter. Retrieved 2020-08-15.
    15. "HASHTAG UNITED ANNOUNCE MERGER WITH FOREST GLADE FC TO BRING YOUTH FOOTBALL TO THE CLUB | Hashtag United". FootballFanCast.com. 2020-05-05. Retrieved 2020-08-15.
    16. "Welcome to the official website of Forest Glade FC | Billericay, Essex". www.forestgladefc.co.uk. Retrieved 2020-08-15.
    17. HASHTAG'S NEW TEAM! , retrieved 2020-04-20
    18. Whaling, James (2020-04-20). "Hashtag United join forces with AFC Basildon Women to launch ladies' side". mirror. Retrieved 2020-04-20.
    19. admin (2020-04-20). "Coronavirus battle: Hashtag United launch women's side with Basildon". The Non League Football Paper - Daily football news. Retrieved 2020-04-20.
    20. "AFC Basildon Girls U18". fulltime-league.thefa.com. Retrieved 2020-04-28.
    21. Hashtag United, a unique symbiosis of virtual and real-life football FIFA, 28 December 2018
    22. Hashtag join Sunday league Hashtag United on YouTube
    23. 2x champions? Hashtag United Sunday League S2E10 Hashtag United on YouTube
    24. Meet the teams! - Next Level Football League Next Level Football League on YouTube
    25. INTRODUCING HASHTAG UNITED! Hashtag United on YouTube
    26. NEW KITS & NEW SIGNING! - HASHTAG UNITED Hashtag United on YouTube
    27. Hashtag United: Inside story on the rise and rise of YouTube's No.1 football team Daily Mirror, 17 October 2008
    28. Hashtag United x Hummel Kit Deal Announced - No More Adidas Footy Headlines, 28 April 2021
    29. Hashtag United Women's FC signs deal with TGI Fridays Echo News, 8 July 2021
    30. We'll be moving home next season... Hashtag United, 25 April 2019
    31. WHERE'S OUR NEW HOME? - ASK DEVS ANYTHING #3 Hashtag United, 25 April 2019
    32. Hashtag United launch first Hashtag Academy sports and education programme Hashtag United, 12 March 2020
    33. https://www.footballfancast.com/hashtag-united/squad
    34. Hashtag United vs Clapton Hashtag United
    35. Hashtag UTD FC WOMEN vs ENFIELD TOWN LFC Hashtag United

    Coordinates: 51°34′26.558″N0°31′5.160″E / 51.57404389°N 0.51810000°E / 51.57404389; 0.51810000