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Cards looking to seal dramatic promotion against old foes Welling

Glen Harrington - 10th May 2019

Cards looking to seal dramatic promotion against old foes Welling Woking vs Welling United
Vanarama National League South Promotion Final
Sunday 12th May 2019


One of Woking or Welling United will be celebrating promotion to the National League this weekend after both sides came through pulsating semi-finals to setup this Sunday’s Promotion Final at the Laithwaite Community Stadium.

The Cards, who came into the play-offs in poor form after a run of just one win in eight games, were facing a Wealdstone side who had already beaten them twice in the regular season. The Raiders had looked certain to make it a hat-trick after racing into a two-goal lead and navigating the first 75 minutes unscathed, but Moussa Diarra’s header, Max Kretzschmar’s well-taken effort after a goalmouth scramble, and substitute Jake Hyde’s cheeky stoppage time chip completed a miraculous comeback for Alan Dowson’s side, who somehow emerged with a first home win since March. He’ll now be looking to cap a memorable first season as Woking boss, which has of course also included a run to the third round of the FA Cup as well as a second-place finish in the league, albeit with one very tough challenge still to come.

Steve King’s Welling side might have failed to beat the Cards in three attempts so far this season, but they’ll be far from pushovers at Kingfield after coming through their own semi-final thriller, where Brendan Kiernan’s 96th minute penalty clinched victory, after opponents Chelmsford City had come from two goals down to level at 2-2 in the closing stages. Welling have had an excellent season, improving massively on last season’s tenth place finish to come third this time around, cashing in on the experience of new manager King and his well-assembled squad of exciting players. Reported financial issues mid-way through the season, along with the departures of several players threatened to derail their campaign, but they bounced back superbly, winning five of their final seven league games after Woking’s draw at Park View Road in mid-March, and come into Sunday’s final very much on an even footing with their hosts.

The games don’t come much bigger than this and with more than 4,000 tickets already sold, time is running out for you to secure yours ahead of Sunday’s final, so please use the online purchasing option provided to ensure you secure yours before the big day!

Woking Team News

Dowse has some crucial decisions to make ahead of Sunday’s game with all three substitutes who came on against Wealdstone – Jake Hyde, Paul Hodes and Kane Ferdinand – putting their names firmly in the manager’s thoughts after their game-changing impact.

The defence looks set to remain unchanged, barring any late injuries, with Jack Cook, Ben Gerring – following his inclusion in the National League South Team of the Season – Moussa Diarra and captain Josh Casey continuing in front of goalkeeper Craig Ross. In midfield, it looks to be a straight shootout between Ferdinand and Olu Durojaiye – against his former team – for who will partner Armani Little in the centre. Further forward, Max Kretzschmar will likely start in the number ten role, with two of Hodges, Kieron Cadogan, Reise Allassani – who scored twice against Welling in March – and Greg Luer playing out wide. If Luer isn’t utilised on either flank then it will most likely be either he or Jake Hyde starting up front, after the latter notched his 15th goal of the season last Sunday.

Welling United Team News

For their semi-final win over Chelmsford, the Wings started with the following team: Dan Wilks in goal, a defensive quartet of Jordan Gibbons, with King last year at Whitehawk, former Woking loanee Craig Braham-Barrett, Anthony Acheampong and the dangerous Thierry Audel, who scored twice against the Cards last time out; in midfield was Arnaud Mendy, another ex-Whitehawk player who has also been with Lincoln City and Luton Town, alongside David Ijaha, who again was with Whitehawk last season; out wide was Brendan Kiernan, with Dowse at Hampton last season, and another former Card in the shape of Gavin McCallum. Up front was Ebbsfleet United loanee Danny Mills and Bradley Goldberg, a dangerous pairing at this level, with both having experience in higher divisions.

The substitutes bench last weekend also included defender Josh Hill, a play-off winner from this division with both Boreham Wood and Braintree Town in recent years, as well as another member of the National League South Team of the Season in winger Nassim L'Ghoul.

Admission Prices

• Adults £15
• Over 65s £10
• Disabled (Including carer) £10
• Students (Under 19) £5
• U16s £5

Supporters are strongly advised to purchase their tickets ahead of the game through our online booking system. We cannot guarantee there will be any tickets available on the day.

Remember, as with all cup games, a season ticket does not offer entry to this fixture.
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