Departing manager Nicky Law was reduced to tears by the fans’ reaction as he guided Alfreton Town to victory in his final match in charge.
Law, who is leaving the Reds to become head of national recruitment for the under 17-23s at Premier League Burnley, said as supporters chanted his name at the final whistle: “This is a difficult one. I have been here a long time.
“It’s quite an emotional moment. I never thought I would get like that.
“We have done a lot of things together (at the club) and I include everyone in that. The fans are a massive part of everything.
“This has been a tough day but the lads were great today to finish it (my time at the club) like they did.
“It was great to go out on a positive note.”
Law walked over to the fans at the final whistle to thank them for their backing over almost 10 years at Alfreton.
“From day one they have backed me. They are fantastic fan,” he said. “We haven’t got a massive number of fans, but those that have been here today – the hardcore fans, those that are there wherever we go — that really is appreciated by everybody.
“They are a great set of fans. They are behind you win or lose, through thick and thin.”
The club tweeted: “Support from our travelling Reds was incredible today. Thank you for making such a great memory and giving Nicky the perfect send off.”
Two Craig Westcarr goals in either half were enough to help Alfreton leapfrog Trinity in the race to avoid the National League North relegation zone, leaving both clubs four points clear of the drop zone.
Law added: “These lads are too good to be in trouble. They have just got to keep doing what they are doing.
“If they can play with the discipline they have done today and that desire, and with these great fans behind them they will be fine.”
Law has been replaced by his assistant, Russ O’Neill, and the departing boss said: “Russ knows the league. He knows the players and they know him. I wish Russ all the best now. They couldn’t be in better hands and it’s a great decision from the chairman (Wayne Bradley, to appoint him).”
Westcarr struck first after eight minutes. Mark Shelton played the ball to Paul Marshall, who moved it on to Westcarr. The striker’s first shot was blocked, but he rolled his second under keeper George Willis to open the scoring.
Marshall curled wide and Tom Allan had efforts tipped over and saved as the visitors dominated.
The chances continued to come thick and fast for Alfreton in the first half and Westcarr was also denied by the keeper before volleying and heading wide.
Westcarr finally got the second goal the visitors deserved in the 65th minute, chasing a long ball forward and capitalising on a slip by Ioan Evans. The striker cleverly drew the keeper and fired in to secure victory.
Under Law, Alfreton wn the Conference North title in 2010/11 and went second in the Conference at one point in the following season. They also reached the second round of the FA Cup in 2012.
Recalling his time at the Impact Arena after his last match, Law said: “I remember coming when the club was probably just floating about and not doing a lot and happy to finish in mediocrity. We took that to another level and the expectancy became a lot more.
“We got into the Conference Premier and pushed up one. We have taken a little bit of a backwards step now, but we have had some great times. Some players have gone on to bigger and better things, which is great, and the FA Cup runs we have had. Everything has been good.
“We took a relatively small club from a small town and put it on the map. It was a great achievement by everyone. I am sure they can come again.”