Albion eye 25-game milestone

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Manager Paul Marshall has attributed Tadcaster Albion’s incredible run to the “passion and belief” of his players.

Once again, Albion battled back from a goal deficit on Saturday before surviving 45 minutes with full-back Will Pepper in goal to draw 2-2 with title challengers Thackley.

The point stretched Albion’s unbeaten NCEL run and Marshall is craving an early Christmas present this Saturday to reach the 25-match milestone against Albion Sports.

“We are all working hard to keep this run going,” the gaffer said.

“For a small club like us to be challenging Scarborough Athletic’s record of 26 is amazing.

“We are trying to find out if we are the most in form team in the country.”

Thackley took a sixth minute lead on Saturday before an own goal and Carl Stewart’s first strike in three matches brought Tad ahead.

Number one Leon Wrigglesworth jarred his back saving a shot in the lead up to the home side’s goal.

And without a replacement stopper available, Pepper assumed the role.

“Leon has had problems with his back before,” said Marshall.

“He doesn’t know if it’s a back spasm or how long the pain will last.

“Will used to be a ‘keeper up until he turned 16 but it has been a long time since he last played there. He did well.”

Thackley were later reduced to ten men but, with the strong wind behind their backs, they forced an equaliser past Pepper five minutes from time.

“The lads were upset to lose two points,” Marshall said.

“To be disappointed dropping points against Thackley just shows we have come a long way.

“There were quite a few harsh words between players in the changing room afterwards.

“And that’s good. It’s exactly where it should be said.

“That’s a sign of how much they want it for one another.”

Despite his side’s disappointment, the gaffer was particularly impressed with their response to falling a goal behind.

“A lot of it is down to their own desire not to lose a game of football,” he added.

“It’s passion and belief. They feel invincible.”

Wrigglesworth remains a doubt for Saturday’s home clash against Sports and Peter Lawrie or dual registered Scarborough Athletic ‘keeper Arron Reid could replace him.

Midfielder Richard Batley and defender Matt Sparkes are also missing.

Albion could come up against former midfielder Sam Redhead, who joined Sports last week. Sports have enjoyed a strong start in their first campaign in the Premier Ddvision and they caused Marshall’s young squad problems in a 1-1 draw at home earlier in the season.

“We don’t take anything for granted in the league,” added Marshall.

“They played really well against us and we could have easily lost the game had Leon not made some outstanding saves.

“We are 24 games unbeaten going into 25 games. It would be nice for that run to go on.”

Albion have invited supporters to celebrate the renovation of the 2inspire Park clubhouse. The club host a Christmas party on December 27 at 7.30pm.