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Hornchurch must hope for help in tense season finale

12:00 25 April 2014

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane. Pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane. Pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League

Hornchurch’s play-off hopes are now out of their own hands – and if they do not clinch a top-five place in the Ryman Premier Division manager Jimmy McFarlane says they do not deserve to be in it.

Urchins need to beat Met Police in their final game of the season at Bridge Avenue tomorrow (Saturday) and hope other results go their way in order to keep alive their hopes of an immediate return to the Conference South.

They went into the Easter weekend in second place with their destiny in their own hands, but one point out of a possible six against Hampton & Richmond and Canvey saw them plummet out of the play-off spots.

And McFarlane believes the disappointing Bank Holiday sums up their whole season.

“It’s unbelievable really,” he said. “It is the story of our season. Every time we have had it in our own hands, whether it be to go top or to keep our play-off spot, we have fluffed our lines.

“But that is what it is and it is now out of our hands. We can only win our game and hope results go our way.

“Met Police aren’t going to lie down and give us the three points.

“There are loads of permutations, but if we don’t get in the play-offs then it is our own fault.”

The one thing Urchins do know is that if they get into the play-offs they will face an away tie.

But it could be at Bognor, Lowestoft, Kingstonian or Dulwich, depending on how results go and although two are long distance journeys, McFarlane always fancies his side’s chances on their travels.

He added: “It would only be logistically that Bognor and Lowestoft would be a problem. The away form has been better than our home form and I am confident we can go anywhere and get a result.

“There may be potential for two long journeys, but I don’t care where we go as long as we are in them.”

Urchins have no serious injury problems heading into tomorrow’s game and despite their red cards at Canvey on Monday, Stefan Payne and Frankie Curley are available.

Hornchurch played the second half of the Canvey game with nine men and although that took it’s toll on the day, McFarlane believes his players have had enough time to recover.

He added: “I don’t think fitness will be a problem. There’s been plenty of time for recouperation from Monday’s efforts.

“There are no serious injuries, but one or two have little niggles, but that’s something you expect at this stage of the season.”

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