Blues target a very Good Friday

WHITBY Town will be hoping it’s a very Good Friday as they bid to finish as high as possible in the EvoStik Premier following Tuesday’s season-saving win at Mickleover, writes Andrew Snaith.

The 4-2 win ensures the Blues’ safety for another season and saw top-scorer Jimmy Beadle equal last season’s tally of 15 goals, albeit in controversial fashion.

Manager Tommy Cassidy is hoping Whitby fans will improve on last weekend’s 300-plus crowd with the promise of more attacking football for the last home game of the campaign.

“I’m looking forward to Friday, there’s no pressure on us now,” he said.

“We want to entertain the crowd and win the game in front of our fans.”

Tuesday’s success earned Town their fifth double of the season, with Ossett Town, Retford United, Hucknall Town and Ashton United also put to the sword.

The Seasiders will again be without Ashley Lyth, who ends the season with a two-game suspension.

Town have some unfinished business with Friday’s visitors Northwich Victoria who sneaked past them in the FA Trophy back in November. The Cheshire club earned a 2-2 draw at the Turnbull Ground before edging home with an injury time winner in the replay.

The sides’ first meeting in the league also went the way of Andy Preece’s men, thanks to two second-half strikes in five minutes from Andrew Fowler and Michael Connor.

Fowler grabbed a hat-trick in a 4-2 win over Buxton on Monday night, but the Vics have failed to live up to expectations in their first Evo Stik Premier season.

Kick-off at the Turnbull Ground 3pm with admission the usual £7.50 adults, £4.50 concessions and £2 under 18s.

The club will present their end of season awards in the clubhouse after the game.

Then the 2010-11 season comes to an end on Easter Monday with the now-traditional trip to South Yorkshire and Stocksbridge Park Steels.

It’s a chance for Cassidy’s men to pick up double number six after goals from Dave McTiernan and Ash Davis sealed a 2-0 win over the Sheffield-area club in February.

Gary Marrow’s side went on to put together a run of six league wins out of seven to stave off relegation and storm towards the top half of the Evo-Stik Premier after being under threat earlier this month.

Manager Tommy Cassidy sees no reason why Town can’t end the season with four straight wins, adding after the Mickleover win: “I don’t see why we can’t get nine points from our last three games of the season.”

The former Workington and Apoel Nicosia boss will be without Ashley Lyth and Ibby Hassan, who’s hot favourite to sweep the board in today’s player of the season awards. The ex-Chester-le-Street centre-half has been a revelation at the back for Town this season and also leads the Geoff Swales Memorial Trophy poll, which is voted for by fans at www.whitby-town.com

The Seasiders haven’t won at Steels’ Bracken Moor since January 1998, when goals from Mitch Cook, John Borthwick and a Paul Pitman brace sealed a 4-1 victory.

That was back in the Blues’ Northern Premier First Division promotion season, but more recently, the hilltop ground has seen a 4-0 League Cup defeat for Town, who finished with nine men after brothers Alex and Liam Gildea were both sent off.

Then on the final day of last season, a depleted Whitby side lost out 2-0 after conceding two goals in the last 14 minutes. Kick-off on Easter Monday is 3pm with admission set at £7 for adults.