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Cards' huge play-off test

Brian Caffarey - 22nd April 2011

Cards' huge play-off test Farnborough v Woking
3pm on Saturday 23 April 2011

The big Easter Saturday clash! The Cards, lying in fifth place but needing points to stay there, travel a few miles down the road to Farnborough, in second place and still hoping to overhaul Braintree Town for automatic promotion to the BSP. A bumper crowd is expected at the Rushmoor Stadium. Woking fans were asked to buy tickets in advance since the space to be allocated would be determined by the number of tickets sold but it’s hoped that tickets will still be available on the day for away fans.

WOKING

Garry Hill has consistently said that the Cards need 76 points to be reasonably certain of securing a play-off place. That means getting 7 points from their remaining three games: a very tough call since it implies that in addition to getting three points from the home game against Weston-super-Mare on Monday – not to be taken for granted – the Cards can garner four points from away trips to Farnborough and, on the last day, Ebbsfleet United. So, Garry Hill’s side have to get at least one point from the Farnborough match to remain on target.

That would be hard enough with a full-strength side but Garry will be missing Adam Doyle, who’s been superb in defence this season, and his natural replacement, Reiss Noel, who’s also suspended. There has been much speculation about how Garry will re-shuffle his pack but he will be loath to weaken his midfield since Farnborough look particularly strong in that area.

By the time the two sides meet on Saturday, the table will have changed again since all their rivals meet this (Friday) afternoon:

Boreham Wood v Eastleigh
Dover Athletic v Basingstoke Town
Ebbsfleet United v Chelmsford City
Hampton and Richmond Borough v Braintree Town
Welling United v Thurrock

Cards fans will be hoping, in particular, that Ebbsfleet defeat Chelmsford City, who, along with Dover Athletic and Eastleigh, are also competing for the final play-off place, although Welling too, in 4th place, could still be caught.

FARNBOROUGH

Farnborough, who are guaranteed a play-off place, are 4 points behind Braintree Town but that gap could be extended to seven points before Saturday’s game if the Iron beat Hampton and Richmond later today. But Steve King has made it clear that, even if automatic promotion cannot be secured, they will want to secure the runners-up spot. King won the latest BSS Manager of the Month award, with Kezie Ibe securing the BSS Player of the Month award.

Farnborough approach this game on the back of three tough away games at play-off contenders, having won at Chelmsford and Eastleigh and lost at Welling. Working back from their last game at Chelmsford their last six results have been:

Chelmsford City 0 Farnborough 1
Welling United 1 Farnborough 0
Eastleigh 0 Farnborough 3
Farnborough 2 Bromley 2
Boreham Wood 2 Farnborough 4
Farnborough 2 Weston-super-Mare 0

Kezie Ibe is out injured and will miss this game and there are doubts too about winger Bradley Bubb. Jay Davies, who played for Woking in last month’s clash between the two sides, has been mainly on the bench for Steve King’s side since his move on transfer deadline day.

PREVIOUS ENCOUNTER

Woking 1 Farnborough 1
5 March 2011

If last month’s encounter is anything to go by, fans will be in for a very exciting encounter on Saturday. In front of a 2,123 crowd the Cards took an early lead through Kieran Murtagh, only to concede an equaliser in the 97th minute scored by Dale Binns. In between Steve King had been sent to the stands and seven players were booked.

GETTING THERE

See the earlier news item.


Come on, you Cards!

P.S. Don’t forget that the Cards are at home on Easter Monday afternoon to Weston-super-Mare and that all U16s are being admitted free.


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