Jon Shaw wants South Shields to go to Wembley in style – by extending their record winning run.
The Mariners made it 23 victories on the bounce last weekend with a 2-1 win over Coleshill Town in their FA Vase semi-final first leg tie.
It’s set up, we’re in front in the tie and they are going to have to come and give it a real go
Shields needed a last-gasp Andrew Stephenson goal to continue their club record run, and Shaw admits a draw would have left him gutted, even though it would still have meant they were well-placed for the second leg.
And while they just have to ensure they don’t get beat on Saturday, Shaw wants his side to finish the job off with victory No 24.
“It’s great to be in front,” he said.
“At 1-1, I wasn’t too worried about what the final score was going to be in the tie, I was gutted that we were going to stop our winning run.
“The run is as important to me. I love the fact that we’re on this massive run but obviously Wembley is the aim.
“It’s set up, we’re in front in the tie and they are going to have to come and give it a real go.
“It’s going to be absolutely rammed with our fans and will be a good day.
Shaw was an integral part of the Mariners side that came away from Warwickshire with a one-goal lead last weekend, producing a battling, gritty performance throughout the tie.
The striker turned centre-half dealt well with the long balls and aerial bombardment from the Midland Premier League outfit, and knows it will be a similar test on Saturday at Mariners Park.
“At this stage of the competition you expect tough games and fights and for them to be up for it,” he added.
“Over 90 minutes, they didn’t really differ from what they do well.
“They stuck it on us and got round it and we, for the majority of the game, dealt with it.
“Then our quality started to show and we got ourselves into a great position and it’s credit to the lads.”
That said, Shields know they can play much better than they did last weekend, especially in the opening 45 minutes.
Shaw added: “People look at us and see a free-scoring team who play fast, attractive football especially around the edge of their box, and the lads will be the first to admit it was a little bit loose in the first half.
“We kept giving them the ball which suited them as they turned it on us fast.
“But I think overall we were quite steady still. It was a bit frenetic with them going a bit bigger but then once we got our foot on it we played OK.
“We created a few opportunities so hopefully we can be better on Saturday which will put us in good stead when we’re up in the tie anyway.”