FOOTBALL: Derby test for Spalding United
Spalding United boss Chris Rawlinson is looking forward to Saturday’s derby date with Stamford.
The Tulips are close to hitting the 40-point mark which should secure a place at the same level next season.
But the Daniels – led by former Holbeach United joint boss Graham Drury – are aiming to get out of the Evo-Stik South via the promotion play-offs.
Rawlinson said: “Stamford had a great result by beating Chasetown 6-0 last weekend and they have hit form.
“The most consistent sides reach the play-off places but, in terms of ability, anybody can beat anyone else on the day in this division.
“Hopefully, we will have a big crowd here on Saturday.
I’m sure Stamford’s fans will turn up and we want the people of Spalding to cheer us on as well.
“I’m sure Stamford’s fans will turn up and we want the people of Spalding to cheer us on as well.
“We haven’t got too many home games remaining this season and it should be a good day.”
Stamford’s attack is likely to be led by Bradley Wells who guided Spalding into the play-off final last season after scoring 25 goals.
He was on target against Chasetown last weekend at the Zeeco Stadium.
Rawlinson added: “By his own admission, it hasn’t been the best time since he left us in the summer.
“He spent the majority of the first half of the season on the bench at Gainsborough Trinity.
“Then he went back to Stamford where he hasn’t played in every game.
“We had a purple patch at Spalding and it will be good to see him again.
“Stamford have plenty of attacking options and their promotion prospects were given a boost this season as the top two go up plus the play-off winners.
“Last season, we were the third best team and we would have been confident of being promoted under these rules.
“Stamford have got every chance of getting out of this division.
“I like Graham and we even played together at Grantham Town around 20 years ago.”
The Daniels have conceded only three goals in the last 10 games since mid-January.
Spalding have not won at the Sir Halley Stewart Field in 2018.
Paul Walker is ruled out again but Conor Marshall and Ben Davison are likely to be passed fit.
George Couzens will miss the under-21s’ game against Harrowby United tonight.
He was forced off in the defeat to Boston United after a knock to the ribs during the first half on Tuesday.
However, Rawlinson has also agreed for Couzens to contine playing at Sleaford Town until they are safe from relegation.
Jonny Lockie will again feature for the under-21s this evening but no senior players are expected to feature.