Securing home play-off semi-final the key target for New Mills

New Mills joint-boss Dave Birch says securing home advantage in the play-off semi-finals is the key aim going into the last game of the regular season this weekend.

By Mark Duffy
Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 12:03 pm
Updated Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 2:37 pm
Dave Birch has eyes on a home play-off tie.
Dave Birch has eyes on a home play-off tie.

The Millers host Alsager Town who, barring any potential reprieve, will be relegated at the end of the campaign.

A win will guarantee either second or third place, with the team above New Mills, Isle of Man, also at home this weekend. That’s unless fourth-placed Abbey Hey can also swing a slightly inferior goal difference on the Millers if they also win.

It all means Birch wants three points in the bag, then come what may.

Sign up to our daily Buxton Advertiser Today newsletter

He said: “We obviously want home advantage in the play-offs as a priority. If we finish second that’s a bonus but we’re relying on a big slip-up from the Isle of Man who are at home.

“It doesn’t matter who we end up playing, as it’ll be a really difficult game given the four clubs in the play-off zone are there by right and, aside from champions West Didsbury & Chorlton, are the best teams in the division.”

New Mills, who beat Cheadle Town 3-0 on Tuesday night, will play their play-off semi-final on Saturday, April 9 with any potential final a week later at the home of the highest-placed finalist.

A League Cup tie at Cheadle Heath Nomads is scheduled for Tuesday night (5th).

Birch said: “I never want to disrespect a competition or opposition but obviously the play-offs take priority so the team that goes to Cheadle will very different.

"We’ve had a lot of injuries but most of those key players should be back in contention for the play-off games, so that’s obviously encouraging.”