Manager Karl Marginson insists FC United are good enough to seize the promotion lifeline the’ve been handed by the FA as they prepare to visit Garry Flitcroft’s Chorley in tomorrow’s Evo-Stik Premier play-off semi-finals.
FC narrowly missed out on automatic play-off qualification but have replaced runners-up Northwich in the four-team promotion knockout after the Cheshire club’s exclusion for financial reasons was confirmed this week.
The Rebels now travel to Victory Park to face a Chorley side who finished seven points above them in third, with the winners to then visit either Bradford Park Avenue or Hednesford to decide who accompanies champions Chester in going up to Blue Square Bet North.
FC will start as outsiders but Marginson is backing his players to cash in on their stroke of good fortune and make amends for the Rebels’ defeat to Colwyn Bay in last season’s play-off final.
The United chief said: “It’s a big relief for us just to be in the play-offs, but, now that we are, I genuinely feel we can win them.
“Chorley are a quality side, but we’ve beaten not only them but also Bradford and Hednesford on their own gounds this season so I’m sure none of them will fancy meeting us again.”
Marginson is also boosted by having a full-strength squad at his disposal, centre-half Adam Jones having recovered from the pulled hamstring which forced him to miss FC's 4-1 romp over Northwich last weekend.
Meanwhile, Curzon Ashton will be out to end four years of promotion heartbreak when they take on Witton Albion in the Evo-Stik North play-off final at the Tameside Stadium.
Having lost in four successive play-offs, the Nash, who finished just two points above Witton as runners-up to promoted champions AFC Fylde, will be seeking to triumph at the fifth attempt and finally secure a place in Evo-Stik Premier.
Stalybridge Celtic must beat visiting Hinckley in their final Blue Square Bet North outing to give themselves a chance of becoming the third local club to land a play-off spot.
Newly-crowned champions Hyde sign off with a trip to Histon, where they aim to round off an historic campaign with a seventh successive victory before making the big step-up to the Conference's national tier.
Altrincham and Droylsden both end the season with home games, the Robins hosting Gainsborough while the Bloods receive Vauxhall Motors.
Stockport County’s closing-day clash at relegated Hayes and Yeading in Blue Square Bet Premier is a 1pm kick-off.
Ramsbottom will be North West Counties League champions if they beat visiting Winsford, but failure could see them pipped to the title by Runcorn.