Why should I watch..?

Because it’s a huge game for both teams, and there is a place in the semi-finals of a national knockout competition up for grabs.

Leighton and 1874 Northwich have progressed through seven rounds to reach this stage, a feat neither has managed previously in their history.

The home team haven’t lost since Christmas, winning 11 successive matches in all competitions.

And their guest have been on a similarly impressive run, prevailing in 16 of 18 fixtures before a 2-1 reverse at Runcorn Linnets in midweek.

A bumper crowd is expected at Bell Close for the tie, including more than 300 supporting the side from Cheshire.

What they’ve said

“This is the biggest game in our recent history.

“After coming this far, we want to reach the final. After all, we may never see Leighton in the last eight of a national competition again.

“We’re under no illusions; Northwich have a decent record.

“However we’ve won 11 games in a row and are really tough to beat at home.”

Scott Reynolds, Leighton Town manager

“It’s a huge occasion for our club, and of course the players too.

“If we can get to the semi-finals, then we’ve a serious chance of winning the competition – that’s how close we are now.

“However Leighton will feel exactly the same.

“We prepared properly, and everything is in place.”

Wayne Goodison, 1874 Northwich co-manager

Numbers game

Leighton have won nine of their 10 home games in the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division s at Bell Close this season, and progressed through four of their seven FA Vase ties in front of their own supporters too

Man to keep an eye on

Mark Jones

In the most important matches, teams look to their best players to perform.

Jones was rested for the midweek head-to-head with Runcorn Linnets, and will be restored to the starting line-up on Saturday with a brief to inspire his side.

The midfielder has been in impressive form for 1874 recently too, and his ability to break from the centre of the pitch makes him a goal-scoring threat to the opposition.

1874 team news

Full-back Lee Jackson is suspended as punishment for his dismissal during last weekend’s league win against Runcorn Town.

However Matthew Russell is available after returning to the club from Glossop North End on dual-registration terms.

Midfielder Sam Freakes is unavailable.

Path to this stage

Leighton 5R Wolverhampton Sporting (a) W4-3; 4R Norwich CBS (h) W5-2; 3R Gorleston (a) W4-2; 2R London Lions (h) W1-0; 1R Burnham Ramblers (a) W1-0; 2QR Leverstock Green (h) W2-0; 1QR Brimscombe & Thrupp (h) W3-1

1874 5R Chichester (n) 1-0; 4R Pontefract (n) 3-1; 3R bt Ashton Ath (h) 2-0; 2R bt Tow Law (h) 5-1; 1R bt Irlam (a) 4-1; 2QR (r) bt Congleton (a) 1-0; 1QR bt Vauxhall Motors (a) 5-4 (aet)

Form (past six in all competitions)

Leighton W W W W W W

1874 L W L W W W

Most recent meetings

None; this is a first competitive fixture between the two teams

Essential information

When Saturday, February 24

Kick-off 3pm

Address Bell Close, Lake Street, Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire LU7 1RX

Admission Adults £6, Concessions £3, Under 16s £1

Replay date Saturday, March 3 (kick-off 3pm)

Prize money Winners £4,125; Losers £1,375

Parking Available adjacent to the ground