Welling United’s 2022/23 season draws to a close with a final-day trip to Havant & Waterlooville on Saturday afternoon (3pm).
The Wings have hit form during the run-in with just one defeat in the last five, while the last week has seen Warren Feeney’s men pick up back-to-back home victories against champions Ebbsfleet United and Hampton& Richmond Borough.
Feeney gave opportunities to some of the younger members of the squad on Tuesday evening and he well may well do so again on Saturday, with Sam Bayford and Abel Vendrells-Parcerisa impressing, while Kyrell Lisbie bagged himself a brace and Tom Mumford also gave a glittering performance off the bench.
With Taylor Maloney having returned to action off the bench in midweek, Taylor Curran remains the Wings only injury concern.
After what appeared to be such a promising start to the season for the Hawks in which they were amongst the chasing pack for promotion, their form dipped dramatically come the midway point, seeing them slip down the table and seemingly out of the play-off picture.
But, following a game of 14 games without tasting victory, they have giving themselves a faint hope on final day following a dramatic victory over Concord Rangers on Thursday evening.
3-2 down with eight minutes to go, they found themselves an equaliser before winning it in the fifth minute of injury time, relegating their opponents in the process.
Havant & Waterlooville sit in 8th position in Vanarama National League South, with 19 wins, 12 draws and 14 defeats from their 45 games played and can snatch seventh place and a pay-off place, but only if they can win and St Albans City lose and they overcome a six-goal swing.
LAST TIME OUT
The Wings have met the Hawks twice already at Park View Road this season. The first encounter resulted in a 2-2 draw in the league in September – Ade Azeez and Taylor Maloney netted for Welling either side of a Jamie Sendles-White own goal before the break, but Jason Prior’s late leveller salvaged a point for the visitors.
Two months later, in November, the Wings got the better of Havant & Waterlooville in the second round of the FA Trophy.
A first-half Azeez brace was cancelled out by Danny Wright and another Sendles-White own goal, but Stefan Payne’s 77th-minute strike ensured victory for Warren Feeney’s men.
Warren Feeney: “The players are relaxed. It’s been a tough season with ups and downs, but it’s been a building one.
“We’re going into the last game and it’s a tough game. Havant need a six-goal swing, but all we can do is worry about us and finish as strong as we can.”
Havant & Waterlooville boss, Jamie Collins: “The players are buzzing. It’s been a long run without a win and I’m over the moon to get my first win as a manager [On Thursday night]. Everyone is smiling, it’s a good atmosphere and we hope we can go into Saturday’s game hoping to send the fans home happy for the summer.”
Tickets for the game at Westleigh Park are available to purchase online and will also be available on the turnstiles on the day priced:
U16’s: Free (accompanied by an adult)
Wings fans not making the journey on Saturday can follow all the action with live commentary thanks to Radio Wings.
You can join Nigel Jones in the commentary box at Westleigh Park by clicking here come kick off.