Macclesfield Town are just 90 minutes from Wembley and the club is urging fans to get behind their bid to reach the final of the FA Trophy.
More than 2,300 fans supported the Silkmen at the Moss Rose on Saturday against Tranmere Rovers in the first leg of the semi final of the competition.
With the second leg at Tranmere this Saturday (March 18) finely balanced at 1-1, Macclesfield are 90 minutes away from a place in the final.
Coach-loads of fans are expected to take the 50 mile journey to take up some of the 2,000 places in the away end at Prenton Park.
Rob Heys, general manager at Macclesfield Town FC, is urging as many people as possible to take the trip and cheer the boys to victory.
He said: “Everyone at the club is trying to keep calm but it is hard not to find yourself getting excited about being within touching distance of a cup final at Wembley.
“John Askey is doing a great job preparing the lads on the pitch, and Tranmere will have a big crowd there, so we need as many of our supporters to make the trip. Never underestimate the impact the crowd can have on a game, our fans have been incredible all season, and I am sure they will get behind the lads and make themselves heard on Saturday.” A place in the final is also worth £16,000 in prize money, a welcome income for the non-league club. Among those fans heading to Tranmere is Chris O’Neill, 32, who watched the 1-1 draw on Saturday with his son Michael, five.
Chris, a warehouse worker living on Park Lane, said: “This is a chance for the town to take advantage of the club’s success and get behind them at the crucial time. “A final at Wembley will be amazing experience and Michael and I will be doing what we can to push the lads over the line.”
Another fan planning to take the trip to Tranmere, Steve Caulcott, from Prestbury, holds the competition in high regard. He said: “It’s a fabulous competition. You always want to get to Wembley, whether you’re Macclesfield or Manchester United, and this trophy gives us a great chance of doing that. I’m lucky I’ve been to Wembley three times and it’s always great to see your side back there. It would mean everything, not just for the financial side.”r
- Kick-off is 3pm on Saturday, March 18.
- Tickets are available online from www.trfctickets.co.uk or you can pay by cash at the turnstiles.
- Prices for the Willow Catering cowshed stand are £10 for adults, £5 for seniors (65+) and under 22s, and £1 for children.
- Moose Tours in Macclesfield will be running a coach to Tranmere. For prices and details call 07547 688168.
- For live match commentary listen at www.mtfc.co.uk
The FA Trophy means a lot to Macclesfield Town FC.
The Silkmen were the first ever winners of the competition when it was launched in 1970 winning 2-0 against Telford United at the old Wembley stadium.
There was a long wait to see Wembley again, but in 1989 Macclesfield faced another FA Trophy final showdown with Telford, losing 1-0 after extra time. Macclesfield made it all the way again seven years later in 1996, in what amounted to their last visit to Wembley. There the Silkmen beat Northwich Victoria 3-1 to lift the FA Trophy for the second time. On the books at Macc Town that season was current manager
John Askey, who was sidelined with an injury for the final, said: “We’ve got every chance of reaching Wembley, and no matter what is thrown at us we’ve just got to roll our sleeves up and have a go and see where it takes us.”