Salford City will attempt to gain their fourth promotion in five seasons with the club’s first ever visit to Wembley Stadium on Saturday.
The Ammies will take on AFC Flyde in the Vanarama National League Promotion Final. Victory in the capital would see the Salford based club promoted into The Football League for the first time.
City are in the final after a dramatic semi-final against Eastleigh that saw the Ammies go through in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw in regulation time and no score in extra time.
Neal the hero for Salford!
Salford are going to Wembley for the first time in their history!
Dejection for Eastleigh, elation for Salford! pic.twitter.com/ZvQMcPeCaz
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 5, 2019
Goalkeeper Chris Neal saved two penalty attempts in the shootout and sent the Peninsula Stadium into mayhem with the match winning save, with club co-owner Gary Neville visibly emotional and in tears.
— ⚽️📺Footie On TV (@footieonTV) May 5, 2019
After the match, Ammies manager Graham Alexander spoke to Salford City’s website and praised his side for battling against a well-drilled opponent in Eastleigh.
“It was a tough game which we knew would happen, when you get to this stage of the season and into the play-offs it’s all quality teams and we all won a lot of games to get here, and it was the game we probably expected it would be from Eastleigh. They’re a very organised team, didn’t give much away although I thought we created some real good opportunities today but it went all the way to penalties, then it’s down to the players to show the right mentality, their courage and trust their training, technique and they did that.
“I thought we grew into the extra time, we pushed it right until the final whistle but I thought it was a real tough game, two excellent teams and we’re just delighted to come out on top!”
The hero from the semi-final, goalkeeper Chris Neal, spoke of his caution after the match, that despite being one victory away from promotion, the job is not done yet.
“We haven’t achieved anything yet, we set out to achieve promotion to League Two and that’s still our target. We’re not celebrating too much today because we know we’ve sti
l’ve got a job to do at Wembley next week.”
Salford City, who are owned co-owned by former Manchester United players Ryan Giggs, Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and newest member David Beckham, finished four points ahead of Flyde in the table.
This will also be Flyde’s first visit to Wembley, and their first chance at promotion into The Football League. Flyde won once and lost once against the Ammies this season.
Tickets for Saturday’s promotion match are now on sale, with Salford City supporters being placed on the west end of Wembley. The club have also organized coach service to and from the match for supporters, and more information on that can be found here.