SEAHAM Red Star manager Mark Collingwood reckons it’s a must-win game when Jarrow Roofing visit Seaham Town Park tonight in a crucial Ebac Northern League Second Division game.
The Star moved into third place with Saturday’s win over Chester-le-Street while Roofing are sixth from top.
“We are five points ahead of them but they have four games in hand on us so it’s vital we pick up all three points,” observed Collingwood.
“Our aim is to win tonight and put real pressure on second-top West Allotment Celtic. I think North Shields will definitely go up and that it is between ourselves, West Allotment and Jarrow for the other two promotion places.”
With David Palmer and Carl Thorp returning, Seaham will have their strongest squad available.
Roofing manager Richie McLoughlin, delighted that his side reached the semi-finals of the Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup at the week-end, is typically unfazed about the match.
He said: “They are all big games and this one is no different. A win will lift us into fourth place so there’s an incentive for the players.”
A big blow to Jarrow is the absence of regular scorer Liam McBryde, who is sidelined because of work commitments but Andy Appleby has completed a ban. McLoughlin’s only selection concern surrounds the fitness of Ian Davison, who is given only a 50-50 chance of playing.
In Division One, West Auckland Town will move to within a point of second-placed Celtic Nation if they defeat Ashington at Woodhorn Lane.
West progressed to the last 16 of the FA Carlsberg Vase on Saturday but Ashington went out and will need to bounce back with a win if they are to keep the pressure on the four sides above them.
Morpeth Town were also successful in the Vase and they need points for a different reason. They are in the bottom six, just three points outside the drop zone ahead of their visit to Consett.
Another of the winning Vase teams, Newcastle Benfield are at Marske United while Whickham, defeated in extra time on Saturday, host Tow Law Town in the third round of the Brooks Mileson Memorial Cup.
Because it was uncertain whether the Brewery Field would be playable, the twice-postponed Durham Challenge Cup tie between Spennymoor Town and Durham City has been switched to the all-weather pitch at New Ferens Park.
City will be confident a giving their visitors a good game after holding ambitious, big spenders Celtic Nation to a draw in Cumbria on Saturday. Moors boss Jason Ainsley will want his players to forget about their success in the Vase as his side challengers for honours on four fronts.