CHRIS BRANDON is being backed to topple his old club Chesterfield in what manager Peter Jackson admits is a make-or-break game for Town.
The 28-year-old midfielder returns to Saltergate on Saturday (3.00) for the first time since his transfer and is aiming to help Town end a run of six straight away defeats with three points.
More importantly, Jackson believes anything less than victory will realistically end any outside hopes of making a late push for the League I play-offs from 15th place in the table.
Jackson - who was today letting Reserve striker Akpo Sodje train with League II Darlington ahead of a possible loan move to the north east - commented:
"Chris Brandon has been an excellent signing for us and he'll be doubly determined to do well against his old club and make sure we win the match.
"He is in good form at the moment and he knows how important it is for us to pick up the three points on Saturday.
"If we are to retain hopes of an outside chance of making the play-offs then we have to win these next two League matches against Chesterfield and Stockport.
"Draws are no good, but even though Chesterfield have had a poor trot at home in recent months, which is why they've slipped down the rankings, we've got to expect a tough game and be ready to produce our best."
Town will face former favourite Wayne Allison, who returned on the bench last weekend for Roy McFarland's side, who have not won at home in eight attempts since November 27.
Chesterfield have signed Jamie McMaster until the end of the season after he was released by Leeds and they've got Carlos Logan on loan from Manchester City to bolster their squad.
Jackson is expected to recall striker Andy Booth and could play Tony Carss in midfield for the suspended Jon Worthington after he completed 63 minutes of the 1-0 Reserve win at Lincoln yesterday, in which Junior Mendes scored.
Akpo Sodje played the full 90 minutes as Darlington Reserves lost 3-1 at home to Doncaster and he was training with David Hodgson's squad today.
He could play another trial game or, in fact, be signed on loan with a view to a permanent deal.