Gateshead travel to Marske United in the Emirates FA Cup fourth round qualifying this Saturday with a place in the first round proper at stake.
The Heed aim to reach the first round for the first time since 2019, when wins over Ramsbottom United, Kidsgrove Athletic and Colne set up a tie against Oldham Athletic at Gateshead International Stadium.
Marske, meanwhile, have never reached the first round in their history and hope to make records in front a sell-out crowd at Mount Pleasant.
The hosts currently sit second in the Northern Premier League East Division and have won five from five on home turf, while they have yet to concede in the Emirates FA Cup.
Former Gateshead striker Adam Boyes is the current top scorer in the competition with 10 goals to his name so far, playing an integral part in the side who have dumped South Shields and Chester out of the competition in recent rounds.
“It’s a huge game, there’s no hiding from it,” Mike Williamson told gateshead-fc.com.
“It’s a massive game for both clubs and to be in the hat for next round is huge – that’s where we all want to be.
“We know how tough it’s going to be and we need to ensure we focus on everything we can control, because if we don’t then I think we’ll come unstuck.”
“We’re underdogs, so we’ve got nothing to lose,” Marske United midfielder Dale Hopson told the club’s official website.
“I don’t think we’ve got anything to fear and if we do what we’ve been doing then I don’t see why we can’t take something out of the game.”
There are no new injury concerns to report while Elliot Forbes and Jack Hunter could be involved after returning to training.
Saturday’s game has sold out and as a result there will be no tickets sold on the gate at Mount Pleasant.
Supporters are reminded to not attend the fixture unless they have already purchased a ticket online.
Gateshead were held to a goalless draw at Marske United in the Emirates FA Cup fourth round qualifying at Mount Pleasant on Saturday afternoon.
Gateshead made one change to the side that won 3-0 at home to Gloucester City with Louis Storey replacing Alex Nicholson in defence, while Jack Hunter and Adam Cameron returned to the bench.
Marske started off the brighter of the two sides and saw the first chance within two minutes, but Jacob Chapman was alert to tip a close range header over the bar.
The Heed grew into proceedings as the game wore on and Dan Ward almost added to his tally with what would have been a goal of the season contender as he sent a swerving 25-yard strike towards the top corner that Ryan Catterick had to parry wide.
Catterick was called into action again to keep Gateshead out, this time as Adam Campbell was sent through in the box as the visitors began to control possession.
Campbell and Macaulay Langstaff linked up on the counter attack with 34 minutes gone and the latter looked to find his strike partner in the box with the ‘keeper scrambling, only for the pass to deflect away from danger.
Cedwyn Scott tried his luck from the edge of the box on the stroke of half time with a volley but once again Catterick was there to hold and keep it level at half time.
Scott looked to find the net again shortly after the restart as he latched on to a lofted ball forward before trying to chip Catterick, but the angle and distance worked against him and the effort cleared the bar.
Both side saw headers clear the crossbar as Langstaff first met Campbell’s cross on the penalty spot, before Adam Wheatley met a corner for Marske which he couldn’t keep down.
The Heed controlled possession in the second 45 with the home side content to keep their shape and attempt to find Adam Boyes with a long ball on the counter, a tactic which didn’t have the effect it has done on many occasions in this season’s Emirates FA Cup.
Boyes did cause a moment of panic for Gateshead supporters in the final 10 minutes when he broke free and dodged Chapman’s dive, before sending a ball across the box which Storey did well to shepherd out for a goal kick.
Craig Gott forced Chapman into his second real save of the game into injury time, sending a low drive towards the bottom corner which the Australian goalkeeper got down well to to preserve his clean sheet.
The two sides will now meet in a replay at Gateshead International Stadium on Tuesday evening to decide who progresses to the first round proper.
Gateshead XI: Chapman, Tinkler, Williamson, Storey, Jacob, Bailey, Olley (c), Ward, Campbell, Scott (Blackett, 89’), Langstaff.
Substitutes: Cameron, Nicholson, Wombwell, Hunter.
Yellow Cards: Round (62’)