Stay calm warning for Linnets

Paddy Davitt King's Lynn boss Keith Webb is challenging his men to become heroes by clinching the club's first ever Southern League, Premier Division title today at Merthyr.

Paddy Davitt

King's Lynn boss Keith Webb is challenging his men to become heroes by clinching the club's first ever Southern League, Premier Division title today at Merthyr.

Webb's table toppers - backed by Lynn's 500-strong travelling army - head to Penydarren Park one win from the championship and conference-level football.

Title rivals Team Bath visit play off contenders Chippenham ready to cash in on any slips up but Webb is desperate to write another glorious chapter in the Norfolk club's history.

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“That's what everyone is striving to do,” he said. “As much as we've tried to keep the pressure and expectation away from the lads each game over the last few weeks has been bigger than the last. Of course they know what is at stake. They know how important this game is to the club but I know we have the characters to cope with it. This is a big game for me but I've got to keep calm and stay in control of the situation because if I don't I can't expect the players to do the same. They are the most important people in all of this.”

Webb has no special plans to keep abreast of Team Bath's crucial scoreline at Hardenhuish Park.

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“It's hard to get reliable information,” he said. “I've been in situations this season where the info coming back was totally wrong. We will just concentrate on winning our game. I fully expect the Chippenham boss to rest a few. I would do the same as Adie (Mings) in his situation. His only responsibility is to do the best for his club in the play-offs. Team Bath have shown plenty of heart to come through a tough run in. They've been nicking goals late on so you have to give them credit - but this is about us.”

Lynn crushed mid table Merthyr 5-1 at The Walks in December but Webb is wary of Welsh free spirit.

“They've nothing to lose,” he said. “The club has secured another season in this division so they can relax and enjoy themselves. As a manager you are always a little wary of those type of teams. Look at their home record. None of the three sides just below us in the table has won there this season which tells you everything. If I was the Merthyr manager I would be challenging those players to make it a clean sweep of the top four.

“We might have to be patient. Just like at Gloucester last week where we didn't get the goals our play deserved in the first half. You know the opposition will have a spell and put you back under pressure. That applies just as much to Man United and all the top teams - so our fans are going to play another huge part. They were fantastic at Gloucester and we'll need them more than ever in this one.”

Midfielder Mark Camm returns to the squad for the first time since suffering concussion against Team Bath earlier this month. Captain Greg Crane (hamstring) trained in midweek.

“I don't think they'll be any need for rousing speeches,” said Webb. “If that was the case then I've got the wrong players at King's Lynn and I don't believe I have. I've spent all my working life in and around dressing rooms so I know there'll be a bit of tension, a few nerves beforehand. Until they actually get out on the pitch you never know how they will react. My mind goes back to Paul Gascoigne and what he did in the FA Cup final against Notts Forest that year. Lee (Glover) and I will be monitoring the signs and trying to keep them as relaxed as possible. It's vital we keep our discipline.”

Webb paid tribute to his assistant's key role in Lynn's march to a potentially historic title.

“Lee has been a massive part,” he said. “We've worked well together as a team looking after the players. I think we've done the right things at the right times. I can honestly say I've got no regrets. Hindsight is a wonderful thing but I wouldn't have done anything different - whatever people might say. We've got 95 minutes to get a result. That's what it boils down to. You can look at situations over the course of the season like when we led Bromsgrove 1-0 and they scored in the 93rd minute or when we were 2-0 up at Hitchin and had the keeper sent off.

“All that's gone and forgotten. We just have to concentrate on this one. I was involved in Norwich teams that won promotion and got to the Millennium but it's not the same as being in charge of a first team. This is my most important game as a manager.”

King's Lynn (from): Howie, West, Chapman, C Defty, Bains, Crane, Fisk, Turner, Sedgemore, Camm, J Defty, Nolan, Melton, Francis, Frew, Bloomfield, Turner, Deane, Murray.

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