by Jeff King
It's amazing to look at the photo above and realise that was a goal celebration from the very first league game of the season, a 4 - 1 away win at Annfield Plain and in some respects the start of the 2021/22 journey for United.
The home game today against the same opposition represents the end of the home season and the penultimate game of a long and mainly successful one. One more win today will at the very, very least take United into a final league game next week looking to clinch the Wearside League Division 1 Championship.
They cannot look beyond this game. Nor can they look back at past games. They can only focus on this one game and do what they need to do to enable them to put themselves in pole position for what is to come.
Some will look at Annfield's record and in particular recent results. It has not been a kind season for a side with a rich history. They currently though sit 13th in the league table with a won 9, drew 4 and lost 18 record. They have scored 57 goals and conceded the most in the league at 131.
This month in some respects sums their season up. Two great wins 1 - 0 over Darlington Railway Athletic and 3 - 1 over Coxhoe Athletic. However, in the last two they lost 7 - 0 at home to Durham Corinthians and then 9 - 0 away last weekend at Silksworth Colliery Welfare.
The have 100 players signed on with the League so no opponent can really know what 11 (or even 16!) they will bring to the field on game day. What we do know though is whatever it is they will still not lie down for anyone.
Chester just need to concentrate on themselves and hopefully do the job at The Riverside this afternoon, kick-off 14:00pm, and then and only then think about the game in a week's time.