Stafford Rangers joint manager Andy Fearn feels that a cup final date is a fitting reward for his players after their upturn in form in the new year.
Rangers saw off the challenge of Kidsgrove Athletic in the Staffordshire Senior Cup semi-final on Wednesday night with talisman Ben Mills coming back to haunt his former club by providing the only goal of the game.
Boro find themselves marooned at the wrong end of the table as they sit 17th in the Evo-Stik Premier Division, but their fortunes have changed since Fearn and Alex Meechan took over as joint bosses at the end of last year, and Fearn feels that a chance of winning some silverware is no more than what his team deserve.
“It’s icing on the cake for them to go for a bit of silverware in what, frankly has been a disappointing season with the results in the run up to Christmas.
“Since then we’ve gone on a run where we’ve lost 1 in 10 and the lads are putting in a tremendous amount of effort on the pitch in the league.
“That clearly remains our priority, but to have this now to look forward to at the end of the season is a fantastic reward to all the effort that’s gone in since the new year.”
But Rangers are still lingering at the foot of the table despite their decent form of late, and things do not get any easier in the league as they head to leaders Farsley Celtic on Saturday.
While Meechan is pleased with side’s performance in the Senior Cup, he claims that even a piece of silverware will mot salvage what has been a poor season by their standards.
“We all know we’ve underachieved as a group. Stafford Rangers shouldn’t be 6th bottom of the Evo-Stik Premier Division.
“But we are where we are. It’s a good little positive for everyone. It is a good little spin to the end of the season.
“But we just concentrate on every game, we’ve got a tough one Saturday. Let’s try and get up that league and try and maintain the standards we’re setting at the minute”.
Rangers will go up against either Stoke City or Rushall Olympic in the final with Stafford having already beaten Rushall 2-1 in the FA Trophy earlier this season.
But Fearn insists that they will not be focused on the other semi-final on the 26th March and will be prepared for whatever test comes their way.
“Either opponent is going to be a formidable opponent. Whether it’s Stoke City U23’s whatever side they have. They’ll be quick, fast and technically very gifted players.
Or whether it’s Rushall who will compete and fight with us all day long. We know Rushall will be a very tough encounter, but equally Stoke City will be.”