Macclesfield U19s face their toughest challenge of the season so far, as they face Chelsea U19s in their third CEFA Cup final on Thursday afternoon.
Paul McGuire’s side will be looking to complete what has been an impressive cup run and they will go into the clash full of confidence and momentum.
Scoring a highly impressive fourteen goals in the run to date, the young Silkmen side have conceded just three times – with their last three ties yielding clean sheets.
The route to the final started back in November, when The Silkmen comfortably advanced through the group stages courtesy of victories against Blackpool, Manchester City and Tranmere Rovers.
The knockout phase of the competition began back in February and it is accurate to state that our lads have improved with every match that they have played.
A thrilling 4 – 3 victory at Burnley was followed by an emphatic 5 – 0 rout at Bristol Rovers and this set up a quarter-final clash away at Preston North End.
With another devastating performance, The Silkmen stormed into the last four, as a result of an impressive 4 – 0 victory.
Ipswich Town then provided the opposition in the semi-finals and the game proved to be a real battle down in Suffolk – with a solitary goal proving to be decisive.
As for Chelsea, they have also enjoyed an impressive run and will certainly fancy their chances in Thursday’s final.
The Blues started the knockout campaign with a 3 – 2 victory against Norwich City and followed this up with a 3 – 1 win against Aston Villa in the second round.
An emphatic 4 – 0 victory against Stevenage then ensued, before edging a seven-goal thriller against West Bromwich Albion to reach the final.
In addition to their cup exploits, Chelsea have also stormed to the league title – winning fourteen out of their sixteen games played, this has seen them claim the South East First Division championship with consummate ease.
Chelsea have led the way in terms of both goals scored and fewest conceded this season – with the side impressing at both ends of the pitch,
Despite their dominance in league and cup competitions so far, Chelsea are by no means invincible – being particularly susceptible to conceding goals in the cup.
The Silkmen’s league story is still largely unwritten – as they currently reside in fifth place – yet have four vital games left to play.
Paul McGuire’s side have found the back of the net fifty times already this season and in addition to this, have been defensively resolute with just twenty-eight breaches suffered.
With two consecutive CEFA Cup victories experienced in the last two-years, there can be no doubt that The Silkmen are well-versed in terms of winning finals.
That experience could well be critical on Thursday afternoon, as Paul McGuire’s side look to secure a remarkable third straight victory.
In terms of team news, The Silkmen head into the game with a clean bill of health – with the exception of Tobias Pearson who is ruled out through injury.
Chelsea are also set to name a very strong side – with Charlie Martin, Cameron Lawson and Kaiden Akbar all having broke through the twenty goal mark.
It promises to be a magnificent final, with kick-off at Doncaster Rovers’ Eco-Power Stadium set for 14:00.