Christmas crackers are on the menu for a Deeping Rangers team enjoying a terrific season.
Michael Goode’s men are fourth in the United Counties Premier Division having lost just two of 15 matches, they have two semi-finals in the UCL Cup and the Lincs Senior Trophy to look forward to and early next month they can improve on a best-ever run in the FA Vase when they host Eastwood Community in a last-32 tie.
But before that big day Deeping have three Premier Division derbies starting with a home game against fifth-placed Pinchbeck United tomorrow (December 22, 3pm). Deeping are then at Peterborough Northern Star on Boxing Day before entertaining third-placed Holbeach on December 29.
“They should be three great games before we even think about the Vase,” Goode said.
“We are very pleased with how well we have done so far. Sometimes I wish we had more backing from the club, especially after the money we’ve made from cup runs in the last two seasons, because it is difficult to keep hold of good players.
“We’ve lost the likes of Danny Durkin and Callum Johnson recently to bigger clubs with more money. It’s tough for clubs like us because there are so many step four and five clubs in our area, but what I do have is a lot of gifted local lads who want to play for a club which is very stable on and off the pitch.
“Pinchbeck will be tough. They have a lot of good players and we will have to impose our style of play on them from the start. We’ve been brilliant away from home this season and not as good at home as usual, but we are still a confident side on our own pitch.”
Deeping are without key defender Luke Hunnings tomorrow, but they have been boosted by the arrival of Peterborough United Academy attacking midfielder Kasey Douglas on loan.
Star are at Sleaford this Saturday when Holbeach have a tough game against Eynesbury at Carter’s Park.
Pinchbeck and Holbeach clash at the Sir Halley Stewart Field on Boxing Day.
Yaxley are keen to maintain impressive momentum as they prepare for their big Boxing Day derby date at Peterborough Sports in Division One Central of the Evo Stik Southern League (1pm kick off).
The Cuckoos hammered bottom club North Leigh 6-2 at In2itive Park last weekend to make it three wins in a row and a comfortable spot in mid-table.
Tomorrow Yaxley travel to Dunstable Town the team that claimed a surprise draw at Sports last weekend.
Sports, who were knocked off the top of the table by Bromsgrove Sporting as a result, warm up for Yaxley with a game at Aylesbury United.
Wisbech Town host Stamford AFC in another local argument on Boxing Day in the East Division of the Northern League.
Before then Wisbech travel to Frickley tomorrowy when Stamford take on Stocksbridge Park Steels at the Zeeco Stadium.
Spalding United have hit some form in this division. The Tulips are at home to Cleethorpes on Saturday and at Brighouse Town on Boxing Day seeking to build on back-to-back wins.
Saturday, December 22
EVO STIK NORTHERN LEAGUE
East Division: Frickley Athletic v Wisbech Town, Spalding Utd v Cleethorpes Town, Stamford v Stocksbridge Park Steels.
EVO STIK SOUTHERN LEAGUE
Division One Central: Aylesbury Utd v Peterborough Sports, Yaxley v Dunstable Town.
FUTURE LIONS UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE
Premier Division: Deeping Rangers v Pinchbeck United, Holbeach United v Eynesbury Rovers, Sleaford Town v Peterborough Northern Star.
Division One: Bourne Town v Melton Town, Holwell Sports v Blackstones, Huntingdon Town v Burton Park Wanderers.
THURLOW NUNN EASTERN LEAGUE
Division One North: AFC Sudbury Res v Wisbech St Mary, Fakenham Town v March Town United.