Woking v Maidstone United
Vanarama National League
3pm on Saturday 25 March 2017
It is hard to over-estimate the importance of this game to Woking’s chances of avoiding relegation. After Tuesday night’s tremendous 3-1 away win over Braintree Town the Cards now sit in 19th place in the table, ahead of the Stones only on goal difference and with the latter having two games in hand. Torquay United in the last relegation place are two points behind Woking with a game in hand, while all these sides will be looking nervously over their shoulders as York City’s revival continues. Maidstone are sure to bring plenty of fans to help to create a great atmosphere, so come down to the Laithwaite Community Stadium to cheer on Garry Hill’s side!
Just when the Cards really needed a big performance, they delivered it on Tuesday evening. Not only did they get the win they needed they played some fine football in the process. The combination of Delano Sam-Yorke and Jamie Lucas up front was a revelation. Playing like that it is no surprise that Delano was such a big hit with Stones fans during his loan spell there. It will no doubt be odd for him to line up against his recent team mates on Saturday but he can be sure to approach it professionally.
Joey Jones, another star performer, was hobbling towards the end of Tuesday’s game but wasn’t substituted, so will presumably be fine to start on Saturday. Keiran Murtagh, a late withdrawal at Gateshead and another key player at Braintree, was substituted before the end, no doubt to save him for this match.
Other key games on Saturday are: Dagenham and Redbridge v York City, Tranmere Rovers v Braintree Town and Wrexham v Torquay United.
The Stones were promoted to the Vanarama National League at the end of last season, beating Kent rivals Ebbsfleet United 4-3 on penalties in the play-off final after the game had ended 2-2 after extra time. Thus the club reached the top tier of the non-League game 23 years after the demise of the former Maidstone United, who had spent three years in the Football League before going bankrupt. The new club has had to work its way up through Kent leagues and the Ryman League and led a nomadic existence before its impressive new stadium, by the River Medway in the town centre, was opened at the beginning of the 2012-13 season. That season the Stones won... [ Read More