Bedford Town vs North Leigh : Everything you need to know ahead of a big Eyrie weekend

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Bedford Town celebrate scoring a goal against Kempston Rovers in the Bedfordshire derby
Image: Adrian Brown/Bedford Town FC

One weekend of fixtures remain in the Southern League Central Division One title race, and Bedford Town are potentially one game away from lifting another trophy.

In 2021/22, Bedford Town were involved in an almighty title battle with Berkhamsted in this very division, and once again they are on the precipice of repeating the achievement, although the stars will have to align at The Eyrie for another league title to come home.

Standing in their way are a North Leigh side who were at one stage very much in this title battle before falling away dangerously to 13th after a mass exodus of players and failing a ground-grading check that meant they would not have been promoted regardless.

A repeat of the 4-1 away win against this side at the end of January for Lee Bircham and his Eagles will do just nicely but they do need results to go their way if there is to be a big celebration come 5pm on Saturday.

Here is everything you need to know ahead of the big game, with Bedford Town urging local football fans to come down and get behind them in their hunt for glory.

When and where

Bedford Town vs North Leigh is taking place at The Eyrie, Meadow Lane on Saturday 27th April with a 3pm kick off time.

How to get there

There is limited parking at the Eyrie, so supporters are encouraged to share lifts if they’re driving.

The number 72 and number 73 buses both stop near the ground, and leave on 38-minutes past the hour, every hour until 18:38 from Bedford bus station.

The permutations

The maths is simple and Bedford Town will need some help.

Bedford Town have to win to have any chance of stealing the title, and Biggleswade Town have to lose to fourth-placed, Ware. Any alternative on that, and the title is heading back to Langford Road.

The Eagles won’t need to worry about finding the net too many times – not that they’ve had any trouble doing that recently – as they have a two-goal advantage in the goal difference column, thanks in large to fourteen goals in their last three games.

The form

After a blip in March, Bedford Town have regained form at a vital moment with 5-1, 7-0 and 2-0 victories in their last three matches coming into the final league game of the season and they sit top of the form table from the last six game weeks.

The headlines have gone to Leon Lobjoit, who has scored 14 league goals since joining from divisional rivals, Leighton Town but a sure up in the defence has also played a major part in an upturn in fortunes for a group who are in good shape.

Leon Lobjoit celebrates the winner at Biggleswade Town
Leon Lobjoit celebrates the winner at Biggleswade Town Image: Simon Gill

Biggleswade Town have won four of their last five league games since losing to the Eagles on Easter Monday. In the other game, they scored a 96th minute equaliser to salvage a 2-2 draw at home to Hadley but come into this weekend on the back of beating North Leigh 4-0 away from home.

The key men

The aforementioned Lobjoit is undoubtedly the main man for Bedford Town at the moment having scored ten league goals from his last eight games, including the key winner between the two protagonists on Easter Monday.

Elsewhere, Ryan Blake has been in consistently good form while Mark Smith has made some key saves in the Eagles’ goal at the other end, contributing to superb all-round team performances in the last month.

For Biggleswade Town, JJ Lacey is also high in the scoring charts while Harry Draper is in confident form having netted a hat trick against the Eagles’ opponents on Saturday, North Leigh last time out.

It all comes down to this…

Bedford Town have already secured second place in Southern League Central Division One, earning them a home play-off semi final but with Ware, AFC Dunstable and Waltham Abbey waiting in the wings, winning those playoffs will not be straightforward should they need to play in them.

At the end of a long slog of a season, Bedford Town could just be one win from returning to Step Three of the English football pyramid, and the Eagles will need their 12th man to help them over the line.

You can buy tickets on the turnstiles at The Eyrie or pre-purchase them here.