Chorley boss Matt Jansen says securing a place in the National League North play-offs is on par with the feeling of scoring in a cup final.
His Magpies side survived an anxious two-minute wait after a 2-0 home defeat by Halifax before Stockport’s result confirmed Chorley’s spot in the final four.
County had slipped up and missed a chance to leapfrog Jansen’s men as they were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Gloucester.
With fifth-placed Darlington 1883 unable to compete in the play-offs due to stadium issues, Stockport’s failure to win ensured the Magpies’ sixth-placed finish was enough to secure a semi-final double header with Kidderminster.
There was a tense wait at full-time as players, staff and the crowd waited for that full-time tweet from Stockport that would confirm their play-off place.
And when it came, the defeat was forgotten as the Magpies celebrated a fine season.
Now they have a shot at promotion to the National League.
Jansen said: “I’m delighted. There were mixed emotions when we were going through the game – Stockport going in front, us going behind – we were out of it and then we were in it.
“That last minute waiting to see whether Gloucester had helped us out and Stockport had drawn and we were finally in the play-offs was tough.
“But it is not about Saturday, it is about the season and the boys have been fantastic all season and we deserve to be were we are.
“It was a little bit nervous, a little bit tense.
“I think there was a minute left in the Stockport game and Gloucester had a corner, and then another, and we were thinking, ‘Great, it is down at their end with a minute to go’.
“But the final whistle blew and we were elated – it was like I’d scored a cup final goal again, it was brilliant.
“I’m proud of the lads and the whole club because everyone has put their work into getting to where we are – it is fantastic for Chorley.
“We’ve got 74 points – we got into the play-offs two years ago on 71 points, we were in fourth place.
“But we’ve got 74 points and we have made the play-offs. After the game there were overwhelming emotions.
“All we needed to do was get into the play-offs and that is massive for this football club.
“We have punched above our weight this season – we have not got a load of money like the other clubs have and we are delighted to be in the position we are.”