PLUCKY Jeff Softley says turning over enemies Bemerton Heath Harlequins in the derby showdown to retain Downton’s Wessex Premier status will feel like winning the league.
The Wick Lane boss has orchestrated a late revival from his team who, a few weeks ago, were facing the likelihood of shooting down to Division One.
But back-to-back wins at Romsey and Fawley respectively and nearly seeing-off leaders Alresford Town until heartbreakingly conceding twice in the dying stages to lose 3-2, has given them bags of confidence going into Tuesday night’s all-or-nothing game.
A win for the Robins, along with results around the bottom going their way, would all but ensure their safety, according to Softley.
“I know it’s going to be an enormous feet for us but I’m confident we can pull it off.
“Everyone involved in the club has been working tirelessly this season and we want to stay put.
“If we want to avoid relegation then we have to earn the right to stay in the division.
“I’m not sure how Ian Chalk (Bemerton manager) is going to play it but a win will keep us up if other results go our way.
“I definitely believe we can get something, and if we do it will feel like winning the league.”
Softley has everyone available for the 7.45pm clash at Western Way, including highly-rated striker Declan McGregor.
The Irishman didn’t feature at the table-toppers on Saturday but will be back for the midweek derby.
But Downton, having the worst goal difference of -68, will need to be on red alert of Bemerton’s frontmen Joe Sanger and Jack Slade, who have helped their side to seven wins out of their last 10 matches.
And already beating their Salisbury neighbours twice already away from home, in the cup and league, Chalk aims to win his last three games, which starts with the visit of Newport on Saturday (3pm).
“I’m kind of confident going into the derby,” Chalk admitted.
“Our target is to win our last three games but the result on Tuesday is more important to Downton.
“We hope Downton survive but will be going out for three points.”
Over the Easter weekend, Laverstock and Ford, losing by the odd goal at Andover New Street on Tuesday, host Fleet Spurs on Saturday and travel to Pewsey Vale on Easter Monday. Meanwhile, Amesbury Town welcome Cowes Sports to Bonnymead Park on Saturday and head to Andover New Street three days later. All matches are 3pm kick offs.