The penultimate home league game of the season is on Good Friday (kick-off 3pm) when Boston United are the visitors to St James Park.
Tuesday evening’s away win against in-form, 5th placed Altrincham kept Saints in 3rd place though with the chasing pack still breathing down Kevin Wilkin’s side’s neck. Carl Baker and Glenn Walker returned to the starting line-up at Altrincham. It was an excellent performance in a tight game with both sides looking to go forward. Altrincham took a fortuitous lead through a deflected free-kick but Saints levelled with a beautifully worked goal on 70 minutes, Lee Ndlovu netting his 21st goal of the season. The dramatic denouement came in the final seconds of added time through a defensive blunder to seal a vital win.
“Altrincham are not a side to be under-estimated,” Kevin Wilkin said. “The game was played between two well-matched sides. But once we got the equaliser we went on to try to win the game. We finished strongly and it was a great night for everybody and keeps it interesting going into the Easter weekend.”
The win secured a play-off place irrespective of further results. The final three matches will determine final placings and hence the play-off line-up. If Saints remained in third place we go straight into the play-off semi-final which would be held on Sunday 5 May at SJP. The play-off final itself to decide the second promotion spot will take place at the home ground of the club that finished higher and will be on Sunday 12 May.
Visitors Boston are currently in 11th place. Away form has been stronger than form at The Jakemans where Saints won in midweek back in late October with Shane Byrne (twice) and Connor Hall on the score-sheet. The Pilgrims have lost their last two matches against Blyth Spartans and Darlington but the last three away performances yielded a win (against Southport), a draw (at York City) and defeat at Blyth.
Boston announced last week the latest progress on their new stadium at The Quadrant with work due to begin imminently meaning that 2019-20 will be the last season in the current ground, a further extension of the lease having been agreed.
The game will be Saints’ third match in seven days with Easter Monday’s trip to Chester to follow before FC United of Manchester are the visitors on the final league Saturday of the season. The FC United fixture will be an extra special occasion featuring the formal presentation of last season’s FA Trophy (replica that the club retains). Soprano and national anthem singer Emily Haig will perform on the pitch before the game https://www.emilyhaigsoprano.co.uk/. The whole day will be held in support of the Henry Allen Trust, a fantastic local charity with a close club connection.
If you cannot get to the Boston game on Friday you can follow the action via updates on the club Twitter feed and on BBC Radio Oxford.