Kettering Town and Hereford will do battle in one of the biggest games of the season so far at Latimer Park tonight (Tuesday).
The Poppies sit in second place in the Evo-Stik South League Premier, three points behind King’s Lynn Town with a game in hand following the 0-0 draw at Hitchin Town on Saturday.
Tonight’s clash will represent that game in hand with Kettering, who are unbeaten on home soil in the league this season, knowing they could take over top spot with a victory.
But they are in for their sternest test of the campaign to date as they take on a Bulls side who remain the title favourites and who reached the second round of the FA Cup and also knocked National League side Dagenham & Redbridge out of the FA Trophy on Sunday.
Hereford currently sit six points behind the Poppies with four games in hand and while Kettering’s home form is highly impressive, the visitors will arrive tonight having not tasted defeat on the road in any league fixture since August 15, 2015.
And while Poppies boss Marcus Law knows it is a crucial clash this evening, he is hoping the second meeting between the two clubs at Edgar Street on the penultimate weekend of the season will be even more important when it comes around.
“It’s a big game right now and our aim, like every other match, will be to try to pick up three points,” Law said.
“It’s a good one for the club to host, it’s a shame it’s not on a Saturday but we are looking forward to it.
“They are obviously a very good team with a good, big squad but they will know they are going to have a game this evening.
“After tonight there will still be a lot of football to be played but it’s a big one for both clubs.
“But I certainly hope that this isn’t half as important as the return fixture on the penultimate weekend of the season.
“I hope that by the time we get to that game, it is still a very important one at the top of the table.”
Tonight also looks set to be a landmark evening for Poppies legend Brett Solkhon.
He is expected to feature and should that be the case, he will move into second place in the club’s all-time appearance holders.
Solkhon currently sits level with Mick Goodhall on 497 and could break through the 500 barrier over the festive period.
One player who may not feature tonight, however, is Lindon Meikle.
The winger is set to have a fitness test after missed Saturday’s draw due to an ankle injury.
Fans of both clubs are reminded that segregation will be in place for tonight’s game at Latimer Park.
Hereford supporters have been allocated the Station Road end of the ground and the seated stand nearest to that end.
Poppies fans will be housed in the Morrisons end of the ground and any supporters with reserve seats in the stand nearest to the Station Road end will be allocated seats in the directors’ stand.