STOCKSBRIDGE Park Steels go into the penultimate weekend of the regulation season knowing they could all but mathematically be safe from relegation if results go their way, thus avoiding a nervous final week.
For that to happen though, Steels will need to come away with all-three points at neighbours Worksop Town and for relegation rivals Frickley Athletic to lose at Bradford Park Avenue and both Mickleover Sports and Chasetown take no more than a point from their home games against champions Chester FC and North Ferriby United respectively.
Whether it materialises or not this weekend, what is important is that Chris Willcock’s men are in charge of their own destiny.
Goals from Jack Muldoon and a Scott Hogan brace gave Steels a crucial 3-1 victory at Mickleover Sports on Easter Monday leaving the hosts on the brink of the drop, whilst lifting Steels to 17th in the table, two places and two points outside the bottom four.
Steels beat Worksop 3-0 at Bracken Moor last month and will look to take advantage of the hosts’ poor form particularly at Sandy Lane where they have won just twice in 10 outings in all competitions since the turn of the year.
Frickley Athletic face a difficult looking trip to fourth-placed Bradford Park Avenue who require three points to ensure their participation in the play-offs.
The Blues bounced back from a poor run of form which had seen them without a win in six to beat Worksop 2-1 at Westfield Lane on Monday. This made it four points from the two Bank Holiday fixtures giving them a fighting chance of avoiding the drop.
Matlock Town face the invasion of the red army at the Reynolds Stadium for the visit of promotion hopefuls FC United of Manchester as the Gladiators look for a first win in six. The visitors lost both games over the Easter, at home against Buxton then 1-0 at Ashton United on Monday.
Buxton go to Stafford Rangers just four days after beating them 3-1 at Silverlands to all but mathematically secure their Premier Division status.
After a pointless Bank Holiday weekend that saw Sheffield FC lose to promotion rivals Carlton Town then Belper Town 2-0 at home on Monday, Club’s play-off hopes have been left dangling on a thread.
Mark Shaw’s side are clinging on to the last play-off spot with a two-point advantage over Belper who have a game in hand. Sheffield must now win their remaining two games starting with tomorrow’s trip to already relegated Quorn and hope that either Belper or fourth-placed Leek Town slip up if they are to extend their season by a week.