Football fans are set to turn out in force tomorrow as South Shields FC aim to keep their Wembley dream alive.
The Mariners are taking on Newport Pagnell Town in the quarter-final of the FA Vase.
The excitement around the club, particularly over the last seven days, has been palpableLee Picton
They are within two wins of a first-ever appearance at the national stadium, in the final of the competition - and they certainly won’t be lacking in support.
Over 2,500 tickets have been sold in advance for the game, which is being held at Mariners Park, in Shaftesbury Avenue.
The ground record attendance of 2,651 – set earlier this season for a match against North Shields – could be broken.
It promises to be one of the biggest games in the club’s modern history, and joint manager Lee Picton says all concerned are looking forward to the occasion.
He said: “The excitement around the club, particularly over the last seven days, has been palpable.
“This is a big occasion and, as the number of tickets sold for the game has shown, we’ve got a huge fanbase right behind us.
“There’s going to be a massive crowd and we know what a brilliant experience it’s going to be for everyone concerned to represent the club in front of so many people.
“Our sole focus in the lead-up to the game, though, has been about coming up with a real solid gameplan, and identifying how we’re going to execute it.”
Among the Shields ranks is former Premier League star Julio Arca.
The ex-Sunderland and Middesbrough player can’t wait for the “incredible” backing the team will receive at tomorrow’s 3pm kick-off
He said: “I think this is going to be one of South Shields’ biggest games for many years.
“It will be incredible to have so much support behind us. It’s fantastic for the club and shows how much it has grown over the last 18 months.
“Everyone’s eyes are going to be on us and that is something we should be relishing as players.”
All remaining tickets are on sale today from Mariners Park, or over the phone on 0191 454 7800.