Can we finally draw the league to a close on Saturday ?

Worksop Town face Albion Sports away on Saturday at 3pm. This is the biggest game the club has had in 21 years, which was the last time the club tasted promotion.

On that occasion, the club finished second in Northern Premier League Division One on 91 points, with Whitby Town winning the league on 98 points. This was during Paul Mitchell’s first year in charge of the club, the manager writing himself into Worksop folklore; to this day fans remember the good times with him at the helm. You have to go back even further, to the 1972/73 season, to find the last time Worksop won a league title, and this feat can be emulated on Saturday.

With our current run of 15 league wins in a row, a new record for the club, you can’t argue with the Worksop fans that are highly confident of the lads getting over the line this weekend. It’s not just the first team who have tasted success this season either, as the Under-19s prevailed in last night’s League Cup final against Retford United, impressing with a 3-0 win. In addition the Tigresses have backed up their unbelievable league winning campaign last season by currently sitting in third place in the Sheffield & Hallamshire Women’s County League, and also reaching the semi-final of a cup this season.

This shows the feelgood factor at the club, with our teams outside the first eleven also enjoying success. The future looks very bright for the club, everyone is supporting one another, and Saturday will hopefully be another massive celebration in this club’s fantastic history.

Recent form:

In recent matches the lads haven’t always played to the high standard which we’ve seen at other times during this season, which is understandable with it being at the business end of the campaign. Despite that, the lads have won every game in this period, and in our last four games we have scored 11 goals and only conceded four. This shows the quality the lads have even when we aren’t playing to the level we can; we have the quality to sweep by teams with the great balance of quality from defence to attack.

Our opponents Albion Sports have managed to avoid getting themselves into a relegation battle after collecting 10 points from a possible 18, and they are currently enjoying a good spell despite the 4-1 defeat away to Hemsworth Miners Welfare on Tuesday. Before that defeat, the Lions took back-to-back 3-0 wins, away at Athersley Recreation and at home to Garforth Town respectively.

Worksop Town boss Craig Denton will be aware of their recent form and will get the lads prepared for what could turn out to be an absolute classic of a game that would live long in the memory of both sets of fans. We can’t afford to sit back because Albion have goals in their arsenal, scoring 16 in their previous six games.

Players to watch:

Alhassanne Keita:

He is the club’s top scorer on 14 goals. The Lions’ talisman could prove to be a handful for Worksop’s defence and could be Albion’s biggest threat in front of goal. Keita has scored two in his last three games, coming in the two 3-0 victories at the start of this month.

Lamin Janneh:

Another player that the Tigers need to look out for, Janneh has scored four goals in his last four games. Most notably, he scored a brace in the tight 4-3 defeat to second-placed Penistone Church. This shows that the goal scorer has what it takes to trouble the top defences in the league.

Brad Emerson:

The shot-stopper has been in fine form in recent games, producing two clean sheets at Athersley Recreation and at home to Garforth Town. This came at a crucial time for the Lions, helping them steer away from the dreaded relegation battle. Emerson will need to bring his A-game to contain the Worksop attacks that will come his way on Saturday.

Head-to-head:

Worksop lead the head-to-head statistics, winning four games out of nine, while Albion have won three, with the remaining two being draws.

This will be the 10th meeting between the two and everyone at Worksop will be praying for a fifth victory over our opponents. Worksop have scored two last-minute goals in the three away meetings at Albion Sports; this could well be in back of the Lions’ minds. However, Denton will be looking for a more comfortable result on Saturday to give Worksop their sixth-ever league title.

With promotion within the claws of the Tigers, this could prove to be the biggest game so far for Worksop in the 21st century. If we continue on the run we’re on you can’t see anything less than a Worksop victory. Let’s go on the train, bus or car up to West Yorkshire to roar the lads on to a fabulous and famous day that will imprint these players’ names in the club’s history forever.

By Luke Atherton

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