VAUXHALL Motors face a make-or-break weekend in their battle to avoid relegation to the UniBond Premier.
Motors manager Carl Macauley says Saturday’s fixture away to fellow Blue Square North strugglers Gloucester City (3pm) is a “must-win” game.
Gloucester lie just outside the relegation zone and are three points ahead of Motors, although like many teams in the bottom half they have played several fewer games than the Motormen.
Defeat for Motors would mean they would be six points off safety with only seven games remaining.
Macauley said: “It’s going to be tough. We can only do our best in the remaining games and try and get the results. The players have got to go out there and perform, and the Gloucester match is a must-win.”
One factor which could yet help the Motormen’s fortunes is the plight of crisis club Farsley Celtic, who have been charged by the Conference with failing to fulfil three league fixtures, including last night’s scheduled match with Harrogate Town.
One option the Conference has is to throw the club, which is £750,000 in debt and desperately seeking a buyer, out of the league and expunging their record of results this season.
Motors chairman Alan Bartlam said while it would be sad to see Celtic thrown out of the league, it would be beneficial for Motors.
He said: “It’s always a difficult one. No-one wants to see football clubs go under, but there is no doubt it would assist us in retaining our status in Blue Square North.
“If their record was expunged, à la Chester City, we would not lose points as we have yet to play them at home and when we played them at their place we lost.
“We’ll have to wait and see, but it would certainly aid our situation.”
A valuable asset the Motors squad can rely on in their relegation dogfight is top-scorer and skipper Josh Wilson, who has signed a contract with the club through to the end of next season.
Midfielder Wilson joined the club from Burscough last summer and has scored 11 goals from 37 appearances.
Macauley added: “I rate him very highly. He has had experience in the National Conference and we hope to keep him in the team, particularly in the next few games.”
While Wilson is remaining at Motors, midfielder Lee Dodgson, who only moved to Rivacre Park last month, has joined Stalybridge Celtic.