Cards aim to take it to final day
4:12pm, Thu 16th Apr 2015
Nuneaton Town v Woking
3pm on Saturday 18 April 2015
Garry Hillâ€™s side will be desperately keen to win this match since it would ensure that, whatever the results elsewhere, the play-off places wonâ€™t be decided till the final game of the season. Make the trip if you can to support the Cards in their last away game of the campaign. Check your diary, too, to make sure youâ€™ve inked in the final game, at home against FC Halifax Town, at 5.15pm on Saturday 25 April, not least because we will be celebrating Kevin Betsyâ€™s wonderful career as he hangs up his boots.
Four teams are now left battling for the two remaining play-off places: Eastleigh, Forest Green Rovers, Macclesfield Town and Woking. In midweek Eastleigh made a huge step towards grabbing one of those places, winning their game in hand 2-0 at FC Halifax Town to leapfrog into fourth place. They now sit four points ahead of the Cards, who are in seventh place, and another win on Saturday, when they travel to Lincoln City, would put them out of Wokingâ€™s reach. Next, in fifth spot, are Forest Green Rovers with three points more than the Cards and an identical goal difference. Rovers travel to Gateshead on Saturday: if they were to lose and the Cards were to win, Woking would go above them on goal difference. Macclesfield Town, who have been on the slide, are now in sixth place, two points ahead of Woking but with a much inferior goal difference. They are at home to relegated Dartford.
Clearly, the Cards are the outsiders in the race for the play-off places but, with six points still to play for, anything is possible and itâ€™s a terrific achievement by Garry Hill, Steve Thompson and the players to be contesting the play-offs on the final day of the season. At worst the Cards will finish seventh, continuing the year-on-year improvement under Garryâ€™s and Thommoâ€™s stewardship.
Joey Jones and Brian Saah will be available on Saturday following their respective suspensions. So, with Jake Cole, Joe McNerney and James Clarke all returning last Saturday against Gateshead, Garry should have most of his squad to choose from apart from long-term absentee Mike Cestor and, presumably, Aswad Thomas.
Nuneaton Townâ€™s relegation, along with Dartfordâ€™s, was sealed midweek by Wellingâ€™s win over Wrexham. This simply pre-empted the impending confirmation tomorrow of Nuneatonâ€™s relegation as a result of the three-point deduction hanging over them for fielding an ineligible player.
Nuneaton had a dreadful start to the season, leading to the sacking of manager Brian Reid after seven games. Under ex-Ebbsfleet manager Liam Daish the Boroâ€™ put up a good fight to get out of the relegation places, going on a seven match unbeaten run earlier in the year but their recent four defeats in a row meant that they could not make up sufficient ground to avoid the drop.
Nuneaton have some experienced players, including former Wrexham striker Rob Ogleby, fellow striker Andy Brown and England C midfielder James Armson. They have also brought in various young players on loan, including West Hamâ€™s teenage striker Janaai Gordon and goalkeeper Max Crocombe from Oxford United.
Official website: www.nuneatontownfc.com
The Cards Trust coach leaves Kingfield at 10.30am and costs Â£16 for members and Â£21 for non-members. Earlier this week there were still a handful of places available. Ring the Club Shop (01483 772470) to check the position if youâ€™d like to book a place.
The directions on the Nuneaton Town official site are as follows.
Via the M6:
Leave the M6 at Junction 3 and follow the signposts for the A444 towards Nuneaton Town Centre, eventually passing the George Eliot Hospital entrance on your left.
Continue straight on at the next island on the A444 towards Nuneaton Town Centre.
As you go down the hill, at the next roundabout turn right, taking the 2nd exit onto A4254 Avenue Road (going under the Coton Arches railway bridge).
Continue straight along this road eventually going straight on (2nd exit) at the first roundabout, then over a railway bridge and then straight on again (1st exit) at the second island (this is a mini island with the Crows Nest pub on your right).
At the next roundabout turn left into Townsend Drive (signposted Nuneaton RFC / Attleborough Fields Industrial Estate).
Then turn first right into Liberty Way for the stadium.
Via the M1 / M69:
Leave the M1 at Junction 21 and take the M69 towards Coventry.
Leave the M69 at Junction 1 and take the A5 towards Nuneaton / Tamworth. Carry straight on over three roundabouts and after passing an Aldi supermarket on the right and The Longshoot pub on the left, take the next left at the traffic lights onto the A47 towards Nuneaton.
At the next roundabout turn left (1st exit) onto the A4254 (signposted Coventry / Bedworth).
At the next roundabout turn right into Townsend Drive (signposted Nuneaton RFC / Attleborough Fields Industrial Estate).
Then turn first right into Liberty Way for the stadium.
Parking is available for Â£2 at the ground. It is also available on the adjacent industrial estate but please be careful not to block any of the business entrances.
It's a straightforward journey by rail to Nuneaton, with trains leaving Euston at 46 minutes past each hour and a journey time of one hour and seven minutes, so, for example the 12.46 from Euston would get you to Nuneaton at 13.53. Trains back are at 36 minutes past each hour up until 19.36, taking slightly longer than the outward journey.
Unfortunately, the ground is some two miles from the station, involving a long walk of about 35 minutes or a taxi ride. Taxis are available outside the station or from the taxi rank at the bus station in the town centre.
If you are walking, the directions on the Nuneaton Town official site are as follows: Leave the station and turn left along Regent Street and where the road forks keep to the right, cross the road and go slightly down hill. At the next traffic lights turn left into Vicarage Street (signposted A444 Attleborough/Bulkington). Keep going along this road passing the Police Station/Justice Centre on your left. At the next roundabout with St.Nicholas Church on one corner turn left onto Church Street (signposted B4114 towards Attleborough). Proceed along Church Street passing a park on your right and then going under a railway bridge. Go straight on at the mini roundabout by the chinese takeaway into Attleborough Road, continue past the Rugger Tavern pub on your right and then the Attleborough Arms pub on your left as the road becomes Highfield Road. At the next roundabout take the first exit onto the A4254 towards Hinckley (also signposted Attleborough Fields Industrial Estate). You will go over a railway bridge and then go past the Crows Nest pub on your right.
At the next roundabout turn left into Townsend Drive (signposted Nuneaton RFC/Attleborough Fields Industrial Estate). Then turn first right into Liberty Way for the stadium.
Adults Â£14 (aged 17 or over), Juniors Â£3 (16 and under).
Transfer to the Main Stand seats, if required, is an additional Â£2, which is paid within the ground.
The game will not be segregated and Woking fans are welcome to use the bar, which will be open from 12 noon and which serves real ales. Live football will also be shown on screen.
If youâ€™re interested in watching the game in style from the Executive Boardroom, please email email@example.com for details.
LAST TIME OUT
Woking 1 Nuneaton Town 0
30 September 2014
The Cards went into this game on the back of three successive defeats at Torquay, Bristol Rovers and at home to Kidderminster Harriers â€“ which had put a decisive end to the sideâ€™s nine-game unbeaten start to the season.
Joey Jones came in for the suspended Josh Payne and the surprise of the night was seeing Kevin Betsy on the substitutesâ€™ bench, making an early return after his operation.
The Cards passed up several good chances to take a first-half lead, with Jack Marriott guilty of blasting the best opportunity over the bar from only a few yards out.
The Cards found it equally hard in the second half to turn territorial advantage into a goal, thanks to some profligate finishing and some fine goalkeeping from Reice Charles-Cook. In the end, they owed the three points to another excellent free-kick from substitute Gez Sole, firing home just as four minutes of added time was about to begin.
Woking: Ross Worner, Mike Cestor, Joe McNerney, Joey Jones, John Goddard, Theo Lewis (Adam Newton 66), Keiran Murtagh, Chris Arthur, Dean Morgan (Kevin Betsy 76) Jack Marriott (Giuseppe Sole 76) Scott Rendell
Unused Subs: Jake Cole and Nicholas Arnold
Goal: Giuseppe Sole (90)
Nuneaton: Reice Charles-Cook, Leon McSweeney, Theo Streete, Gareth Dean, Connor Franklin, Anton Brown, Lee Fowler, Craig Curran (Jorrin John 75), James Armson, Adam Walker, Ben Hutchinson
Unused Subs: Ben Starosta, Delroy Gordon, James Wren and Ryan Quinn
The Cardsâ€™ final league game is at home to FC Halifax Town next Saturday, 25 April. Donâ€™t forget that this match kicks off at 5.15pm. Whatever happens at Nuneaton, the game against Halifax will be a special day since Kingfield will be saying farewell to the wonderfully talented Kevin Betsy, who will be retiring from the game after a marvellous career at League and Conference level.
Come on, you Cards!
P.S. Have you booked your place yet for the Cardsâ€™ 125th Anniversary Summer Ball on Saturday 23 May? And donâ€™t forget to take advantage of the â€˜early birdâ€™ offer for season tickets!