WE can finally breathe a little easier with relegation pretty much off the table following our 2-0 win over FC United. Bar a freakish run of results over the last four games of the season, we will be lining up in the National League North next season. Thank goodness!

In a season where we have striven to make things as hard for ourselves as possible, there is a degree of irony the win which has pretty much gotten us over the line was about as regulation as they come.

In the week leading up to the game, a lot had been made of what was going on over in Manchester following our visitors’ heavy defeat to Nuneaton. They were looking to bounce back and I’ll be brutally honest, I was nervous. That FC United have been dreadful this season and in fact have been pretty dreadful each time we’ve played them did nothing to ease my nerves. There have been no gimmies this season and yet by the end of the game, I felt about as comfortable as I have about a win this season.

FC United certainly carried a threat. Watching the game from the balcony rather than in the Tin Shed, you could immediately see what the visitors were trying to do. They clearly fancied getting in behind our defence and in fairness to them, they managed it a few times in the first half. Unfortunately for them, they didn’t have the quality to make the most of the positions they found themselves in.

Meanwhile, looking the other way, it became clear early on their defence was very static. As a team, they didn’t seem too hot about tracking runs from deep which was ultimately exploited when Omar Holness ran from deep to comprehensively head home from a Jordan Nicholson cross. It was a lovely move.

The second goal from Stephen Thompson on the hour pretty much killed off the contest, much to the relief of us all. A bit like the game at Nuneaton a couple of weeks ago, we had the extra quality to get the goals. For their good attacking positions, FC United lacked that extra quality.

In terms of performances, there were a few good showings in black and white but for me Romal Palmer stood out, putting in an excellent performance. I thought he was a nose ahead of his midfield partner Holness. As a pair, I was pleased with how they went about their work. Midfield has been a bit of a problem area for us. The opening weeks of the season saw Joe Wheatley and Tom Elliott looking the business but for one reason or another, that partnership hasn’t really happened for the majority of the season. Palmer and Holness on Saturday showed power, poise and ran the show. Hopefully they can replicate that in our final four games.

With a seriously disappointing season now free to close itself out, I hope we can put in some good performances between now and the end of the month. It has been a tough, ask watching Darlo this season, and the dwindling crowds are a testament to that.

While the autopsy on our season will go into full swing after the Leamington game, our fans need to be given something to cling on to during the long summer months. A sense that coming back in August will be worth it. Last season, we broke up for summer on a relative high. Replicating that will be impossible but two or three wins from the final four games might just start to rebuild some of the faith.