Search

Wingate & Finchley face final battle for survival on last day of the season

08:45 24 April 2014

Ahmet Rifat (centre) in action for Wingate & Finchley. Pic: Martin Addison

Ahmet Rifat (centre) in action for Wingate & Finchley. Pic: Martin Addison

Archant

Wingate & Finchley will be fighting for survival in the Ryman League Premier Division in Saturday’s final game of the season – and their fate is out of their hands.

The Blues picked up four points over the Easter weekend, with Josh Kennet scoring in a 1-1 draw at home against relegation rivals Enfield Town on Saturday before Ahmet Rifat and Leon Fisher struck in a 2-0 victory at Leiston on Monday.

However, W&F still sit in the bottom four as they prepare to host Billericay Town in this weekend’s finale.

Wingate are level with East Thurrock United on points but are 12 goals worse off on goal difference, and they trail Enfield Town by two points with an extra five-goal handicap.

Both teams can be overtaken on the final day, and East Thurrock face second-placed Bognor Regis Town, who will be attempting to secure the top play-off spot and gain home advantage in the semi-final and final.

On the other hand, Enfield Town are away against basement boys Cray Wanderers and will be favourites to get the result that they need to stay up.

A Wingate victory in itself is by no means certain given that Billericay sit 10th in the table, 11 places above them.

However, director of football David Norman – who was manager when the Blues won promotion to the Premier Division in 2011 – believes that Monday’s away win at ninth-placed Leiston has given the squad a valuable injection of self-belief.

“We did very well on Monday,” he said. “It’s the first time we’ve won at Leiston and all credit must go to the players.

“It’s given us a real confidence boost to win away against a team who were in excellent form, and it was really deserved.”

Norman added: “I don’t think it’s really a nervy week, we know what we have to achieve. There’s three points for us to gain to give us a chance to keep playing at this level. That’s everyone’s ambition.

“We’ve worked very hard to get to this level, and it’s a very challenging league. We’ve had some very good performances this season and unfortunately some which have not been of the level required.

“The majority of teams have financial backing which allows them to have large squads and bring players at various points during the season.

“At Wingate, we aim to develop young talent from the local area. We have an ethos and we want to maintain that at this level.

“Anybody’s capable of beating anybody in this division. The margins of success and failure are very close and there could be some upsets in the games that we’re talking about this weekend.

“All we can do on Saturday is keep to our footballing ethos, play the way we always set out to play and keep the pressure on East Thurrock and Enfield above us.

“We can’t do anything about their games but what I can say is that our squad is up to the challenge of getting what we need this weekend.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen both scored twice while Heung-Min Son was also on target as Tottenham strolled to a 5-0 home win against Swansea at White Hart Lane. Here are five talking points.

Yesterday, 22:30

Mauricio Pochettino says he has used a much-needed week off to focus on “the bigger picture” with his players and to stress the importance of being mentally ready to play at full intensity every three days.

Yesterday, 12:00

Mauricio Pochettino says it has been difficult for Moussa Sissoko to get into a rhythm at Tottenham and show his best form after three months of interruptions.

Yesterday, 09:15

Mauricio Pochettino admits Tottenham were a little hasty in selling Gylfi Sigurdsson to Swansea, conceding that the Iceland international would have been a “perfect player” for his squad.

Thu, 22:30

Mauricio Pochettino says Harry Kane’s latest contract extension shows the striker is motivated by a love of Tottenham rather than money.

Thu, 14:15

Mauricio Pochettino admits he is concerned about Erik Lamela’s hip injury, which is not improving as quickly as expected, while centre-back Toby Alderweireld is still not certain to return against Swansea on Saturday.

Thu, 09:00

Two heads are better than one, the saying goes – and that’s certainly been the guiding principle behind the establishment of Blacksmiths FC.

Thu, 07:00

Sean Cronin says Wingate & Finchley’s free-scoring run of form has lifted the pressure that burdened their defence earlier in the season.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now