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Curzon Ashton's day of destiny awaits

Credit: BiddleofNowhere Photography

Curzon Ashton are just 90 minutes away from making history.

The club need just one point from their final game of the season to secure a spot in the National League North play-offs for the first time in their entire history.

Standing in their way are the league’s bottom-placed and already relegated side, Bishop’s Stortford, who play host to the Nash in the season finale this Saturday.

There are no easy games of course but Craig Mahon and his side will be full of confidence knowing the hosts have lost four out of their last five, including a 7-0 loss to South Shields.

A draw in Saturday’s match would ensure their place in the play-offs, though a loss could still be enough should other results go their way.

A win however would not only guarantee a play-off spot, but it would also secure a sixth placed finish, which would be crucial in determining potential opponents.

Should The Nash finish seventh, they would face the leagues fourth placed side in their play-off eliminator match, whereas a sixth placed finish would see them have the slightly more favourable tie against the side that finished fifth.

Whatever the outcome this weekend, there is no doubt this will go down as the greatest season the club has ever had.

Curzon have already smashed their record National League North points tally of 65 set last season, with the club currently sat on 74 points for this campaign with a game to spare.

Sealing a play-off spot would be a landmark moment for the club in its relatively short history and it would be living proof that success in football is not solely dependent on finances, with Curzon having the second-lowest budget in the entire division.

The togetherness at the club from top to bottom has inspired this record-breaking season, in which everyone involved with the group has played their part, from the directors down to the players.

This is epitomised by the coaching staff of Craig Mahon, Jack Salkeld and Mark Bradshaw, along with goalkeeper coach Kieran Bentley, who have all worked together to inspire this record-breaking season since taking over back in October.

As well as excelling on the touchline, player-manager Craig Mahon has shown that his playing days are far from over with his outstanding on-pitch performances throughout the season, further highlighted by his stunning display at the weekend, recording a goal and an assist in a 4-1 thrashing of Gloucester City.

Speaking ahead of what club chairman Wayne Salkeld has dubbed ‘the biggest game in Curzon’s history’, Mahon told The Reporter:

“It’s been a fantastic season both on and off the pitch and I feel as though myself, the club, the staff and the players have all grown together.

“The players have been fantastic we’ve changed lots of things since the last manager was here, but the lads have really bought into it and it’s coming to fruition on the pitch.

“I’m so grateful that the club has given me the perfect opportunity to learn and grow, and we now have the chance to achieve something special.

“I’m always looking to improve as a manager and it’s great to have had the guidance of Jack and Mark this year.

“Regardless of where we end up, myself and the staff will be so proud of what we’ve achieved but the play-offs are the dream of everyone at the club and hopefully we can get the job done.”

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