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Rushall Olympic and Stourbridge clash in fight for play-offs

By Liam Keen | Stourbridge FC | Published:

Rushall Olympic manager Liam McDonald is aiming to build on cup success as his side welcome play-off rivals Stourbridge in the Southern Central Premier.

Liam McDonald (Manager)

The Pics are currently seventh in the league are three points behind Stourbridge in fifth.

After overcoming Romulus 4-0 in the Birmingham Senior Cup quarter-final on Tuesday, McDonald’s men now host Mark Yates’ Stourbridge, who only took charge of the side last week.

“We’ve put ourselves into a strong position on a number of different fronts and it really is exciting times for us all,” McDonald said.

“The players have put in two extremely professional performances over the past week or so to take a step closer to Cup Finals in both the JW Hunt Cup and Birmingham Senior Cup.

“Their attitude was spot-on in our 3-0 victory over Wolverhampton Sporting Community and then the 4-0 triumph over Romulus on Tuesday evening.

“It means that we’re in a good place going into Saturday’s game. Stourbridge are my local club and I’ll have plenty of family and friends at the match – supporting both clubs.

“It will be interesting to see how our visitors line-up under a new manager. They are one of the teams battling it out for a place in the play-offs and it’s sure to be a keenly-contested local derby. This month was always going to be a big one for us in our season. By the end of it we will have a much clearer idea of where we’re at.

“We’ve done well to get to this stage of the season and still be in the hunt and also fighting on a number of fronts in cup competitions. The challenge now is for is to be able to put in the level of performance that will keep us within the leading pack.

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“I have told the players that they have done the club proud this season and whatever happens between now and the end of the campaign, nothing will change that.

“We will go out there and do our best in the matches that remain and see where it takes us.”

Elsewhere in the league, mid-table Hednesford Town travel to bottom side Redditch United.

In the Northern Premier, bottom-placed Stafford Rangers will be looking to keep their survival hopes alive when they host seventh-placed Whitby Town.

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Their opponents beat Rangers 2-1 in the reverse fixture in February and manager Alex Meechan still believes they can get out of this rut.

“Everyone connected to Stafford Rangers knows we are results driven, the talking has been done now,” he said.

“Everyone knows that we need to get results and get wins under our belts.

“We still believe, it’s not mathematically impossible and with just two wins in a row – all of a sudden everything changes and the momentum us with us.

“We’re still trying to get that and the lads are capable. The win on Tuesday will help with that confidence.

“The commitment and desire is what will make the fans more satisfied, but we know they aren’t happy with our position in the league.

“The players have to show that they are willing to fight for the football club.

“We have three home games in a row now and it’s an opportunity for us to take.”

Meanwhile, in Southern Central One, Halesowen Town were knocked off the top spot in midweek after losing 1-0 to Berkhamsted, who now lead them by one point in first place.

The Yeltz have two games in hand over their title challengers, however, and will be looking to keep the pressure on them when they host second-bottom Kempston Rovers. In Northern One South East, struggling Chasetown travel to fifth-placed Stocksbridge Park Steels, while Kidderminster Harriers are away to Southport in a mid-table clash in National League North.

Liam Keen

By Liam Keen
Sports Reporter

Sports journalist at the Express & Star, primarily covering Walsall FC and grassroots sport across the Black Country and Staffordshire. Got a story? Get in touch on 01902 319456.

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