Harrogate Town and Notts County go into battle at Wembley this afternoon for one of the greatest prizes in English football, a place in the English Football League.
The pair finished second and third in the Vanarama National League table following the curtailment of the season due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Both clubs won their respective play-off semi-finals against Boreham Wood and Barnet last weekend to set up this afternoon’s Wembley showpiece.
For Harrogate Town, this afternoon marks a huge opportunity to reach the promised land of the English Football League for the very first time. This is the closest that Town have come to becoming part of the elite in their 106-year history. Simon Weaver’s side finished 5.791 points ahead of this afternoon’s opponents Notts County after the final standings were calculated on a points per game basis.
Forward Jack Muldoon is the one-to-watch for Harrogate Town. The player is the club’s top scorer this season with 14 goals while his decisive strike against Boreham Wood at The CNG Stadium last weekend is one of the reasons why Town find themselves at Wembley for the very first time in their history this afternoon.
Opponents Notts County recovered from a stuttering start to life in non-league football to get to their current position. The Magpies won just two of their first 10 matches in the Vanarama National League following their relegation from Sky Bet League Two last season. Neil Ardley’s side have since completely turned their form around and arrive at Wembley as favourites to win promotion.
The Magpies have won all of their last six games in all competitions while it should be noted that they were 2-0 winners at Harrogate Town back in August.
Kristian Dennis and Kyle Wootton are Notts County’s top scorers this season with 13 goals. The former was on-target in his side’s 2-0 victory over Barnet in their play-off semi-final at Meadow Lane last weekend.
Notts County are not only bidding to win back their place in the English Football League this afternoon following a 12-month absence, they are also battling for the return of their status as the oldest Football League club. The Magpies were formed way back in 1862 while they were one of the 12 founder members of the Football League in 1888.
This afternoon’s Vanarama National League promotion final is scheduled to kick-off at 3pm and will be screened live on BT Sport 1 HD & Ultimate.