Tadcaster Albion’s NCEL title race hotting up

Tadcaster Albion's Calum Ward races through on Saturday pic by Ian Parker
Tadcaster Albion's Calum Ward races through on Saturday pic by Ian Parker

Assistant boss Mike Morton reckons Tadcaster Albion’s rivals will feel the title race heat in the season run-in.

Albion remained six points clear at the top of NCEL Premier on Saturday after thrashing second-bottom Nostell Miners Welfare 5-0 away on Saturday.

But, despite the Brewers sitting on top of the pile, five clubs could overhaul them if securing maximum points from their games in hand.

Danger side Brighouse Town are seven matches and 11 points in arrears to Paul Marshall’s Tad, while second-placed Barton Town Old Boys have four more matches.

Albion have just eight matches left to play, and Morton insisted the players were taking “each game as it comes” in their promotion pursuit.

But Marshall’s assistant believes Albion’s high-flying adversaries will drop points as the backlog takes its toll.

He said: “If you’re looking at the back end of the season, they have all the tough fixtures.

“They are going to be really competitive games.

“The more points we take, the more pressure it puts on them.

“I reckon they will feel the pressure when it comes to the big games and when they are playing each other.”

Albion welcome 12th-placed Worksop Paramore this Saturday, a side that could yet have a say on the title race.

Worksop have ten matches in hand on Albion and seven wins would equal the leaders’ tally. However Albion sneaked a 2-1 win in Worksop earlier this season, when Carl Stewart hit a 90th minute winner.

“If we beat them, that’s the double over them but if they beat us, with their games in hand, they can over take us,” added Morton.

“It’s a big six-pointer.”

Goalkeeper Arron Reid (injured) is a doubt but Stewart will return after his unavailability last weekend.

Without the 28-goal marksmen, Danny Critchlow and Calum Ward led Albion’s line on Saturday and both bagged braces.

Captain Nick Thompson also scored.

Morton added: “The pitch wasn’t the best so we had to change our style and go quite direct. It was all about territory football.

“The more pressure we put them under, the more mistakes they would make.”

New recruit Nicky Deverdics made his debut in the 2-1 League Cup third round exit at Eccleshill United last week, before starring in the Nostell victory.

Morton said the midfielder had added quality to the squad.

“He has shown he has a strong personality and he has that bit of magic in the final third,” Morton added.

“He has that killer pass we have been lacking, and that has given the strikers the chances to score.”