Brackley Town’s fate is in their own hands

With seven games to go in the Vanarama National League North season, Brackley Town’s fate lies in their own hands.

Friday, 8th April 2022, 7:00 am
Kevin Wilkin applauds the Brackley Town supporters following the crucial win over Gateshead last weekend. Pictures by Glenn Alcock
Kevin Wilkin applauds the Brackley Town supporters following the crucial win over Gateshead last weekend. Pictures by Glenn Alcock

James Armson’s late penalty secured the most precious of 1-0 wins as the Saints defeated title rivals Gateshead at St James Park last weekend.

And Kevin Wilkin’s team followed that up with a 0-0 draw at Curzon Ashton in their game in hand on Tuesday night to move a point clear at the top of the table.

It’s now 16 games without defeat and 24 clean sheets from 35 league outings for Brackley but, more importantly, they now have everything in their own hands for the final push.

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James Armson celebrates after scoring the penalty that gave Brackley Town a 1-0 victory over Gateshead

The next test is a home clash with play-off contenders York City on Saturday and Wilkin, as ever, is looking no further ahead than the next game.

“When you look at it over the course of two games, it’s four out of six points,” the Brackley boss, who was named manager of the month for March in the National League North this week, said.

“Saturday took an incredible amount out of people, I think. The endeavour and emotion it took on the day, it was always a concern with the game at Curzon coming straight after it.

“It probably came at a wrong time for us but I’m not making excuses.

“We would have liked to have won the game but, keeping things in perspective, four out of six points is fantastic even if it didn’t come the way most might have expected.

“It puts us in a great position but we know we have tough challenges ahead of us.

“We just have to concentrate on Saturday now and that’s something we have been able to do all season, focus on the game ahead.

“It’s nice to be in this position and let’s see where we can take it.”

Brackley’s incredible form and promotion push has clearly caught the imagination of the local community.

The big game with Gateshead was played out in front of a crowd of 1,557 - a league record home attendance for the Saints.

“The crowds have steadily been increasing and I think we can expect another strong attendance on Saturday,” Wilkin added.

“I think it’s captured the imagination of local people, they have been coming along and creating that atmosphere that Brackley probably hasn’t seen on that many occasions.

“It’s a pat on the back the players deserve. The lads enjoy it, the crowd enjoy it and you want that to continue for as long as you possibly can.”