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United could seal play-off place with victory at Chasetown

FC United could seal a place in the Evo-Stik Premier Division play-offs for the first ever time with a win at Chasetown if Marine fail to win away to champions Halifax and North Ferriby drop any points whilst hosting Kendal.

The Reds need just six more points from their last four games to be guaranteed a crack at promotion but the prize could be gifted to them on Saturday if their rivals from Merseyside and Humberside slip up.

United will have a virtually full strength team to take on fellow play-off contenders Chasetown as we visit The Scholars Ground for the first time in our near-on six year history.

David Chadwick should be available to make his 200th appearance for the club after picking up a knock during the warm-up before the 4-1 victory over Frickley Athletic on Wednesday night. Matthew Tierney will hope to be recalled to the first team squad but with Nicky Platt, Jake Cottrell, Simon Carden, James Holden and Steve Torpey all able to fill the central-midfield role, the youngster may find his chances limited.

FC United assistant manager Roy Soule laughed off the temptation to start with ten men against the Scholars following the Reds winning twice in the last week whilst have a player sent off in each match. He said: “We’ve been toying with the idea of starting with eight and introducing the other three as the match progresses.

“Seriously though, the players have responded really well when we’ve had someone sent off. I think that’s down to the 4-5-1 formation we’ve been playing, which can easily be adapted to 4-4-1, and their fitness levels which have really shown through.”

Soule confirmed that FC United has supplied the FA with video evidence from FCUM.TV as part of an appeal against Sam Ashton’s red card against Northwich Victoria and subsequent three game suspension.

He said: “I sat down with Andy Walsh (FC United general manager) the other day and we watched it ten times, pausing it and rewinding it. If Sam’s elbowed him deliberately he’s bloody good at it because I couldn’t see anything.

“I don’t normally stick up for keepers, they usually get enough protection and I wouldn’t be in favour of appealing unless we have good evidence because we don’t want to make ourselves look silly. But they’re both jumping for the ball, Sam’s won it and they’ve collided, there’s nothing more to it.

“If the referee thinks he’s seen something and makes an honest decision that’s all you can ask for on the day. But with the video evidence we’ll at least ask the FA to take another look at.”

The Reds will be hoping for some good news but before that, they must concentrate on the matter in hand – the trip to Chasetown. The Scholars desperately need a win to get their fading promotion chances back on track.

Until recently they were knocking on the door to the play-off places but having only won one in the last five,, including disappointing defeats at Frickley Athletic last weekend and at home to Stocksbridge Park Steels the Saturday before, they have slipped down to ninth.

FC United will be looking to extend their unbeaten run to 17 games with a repeat of the performance in the reverse of the fixture back in February which saw them win 4-2 after the dismissal of Richard Battersby, although keeping 11 men on the pitch this time would be preferred.

Chasetown versus FC United is this Saturday 16 April with kick-off at three o’clock. It’s pay-on-the-gate as usual. Get yourself to that football ground.

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First Posted ~ 17:14 Sun 17 Apr 2011
News ID ~ 3538
Last Updated ~ 17:14 Sun 17 Apr 2011