Boosted by an invasion of around 30 vocal members of their Norwegian branch of supporters, Chippenham Townâ€™s Southern League Premier Division survival hopes were boosted with a gripping 4-3 victory over a St Albans City side that could mull over several moments of misfortune during their visit to Hardenhuish Park on Saturday.
After twice coming from behind to deservedly lead by the interval the Saints fell away badly after the break as Nathan Rudge's Bluebirds displayed unshakeable spirit to chalk up a crucial third consecutive win in a week and a fourth success in four games against St Albans.
James Gray and Graham Golds made four changes from the City side that drew with Bashley a week earlier. Goalkeeper Nick Jupp was rested as the management team wanted to have a closer look at Reserve keeper Nick Hardy.
Mischievous supporters suggested that Jupp may actually have been side-tracked into watching his beloved Millwall in their FA Cup semi-final tie against Wigan Athletic.
Left-back Layne Eadie returned after a month out through injury while Curtis Shaw was recalled into the midfield and Brad Wadkins joined Greg Ngoyi in attack.
Making way for that trio were Fabio Bufano, Darren Locke and Chris Henry.
City, playing down the slope, began positively with Curtis Shaw firing just wide of the home goal inside the opening minute but it was the Bluebirds that were celebrating after just five minutes when Hardy was left groping at thin air, as Lee Phillips opened the scoring with a spectacular volley from 20 yards.
St Albans brushed that early setback aside to play some of their best passing football for weeks.
Chippenham had a let off when a Joe Bruce header from a James Comley corner was headed clear from inside the six-yard box by Iain Harvey.
But when the home side moved forward gaps were to be found in the City defence and Alan Griffin should have done better than blaze well wide after being set up by Phillips.
Fortune appeared to smile on the Wiltshire side on 20 minutes when Brad Wadkins was booked for diving inside the penalty after appearing to have been tripped by Chippenham central defender Greg Tindle.
But City did pull level on the half hour when a Greg Ngoyi shot was partially slowed by Tindle only for the alert Elliott Godfrey to nip in and poke the ball home via an upright.
The City midfielder was clattered to the ground by a combination of Tindle and keeper Ben John for his troubles, but at least the Saints were level.
Goals now flowed during the final 15 minutes of the half.
Ngoyi controlled a cross from Wadkins but sliced his shot well wide as City moved forward confidently and it was something of a surprise when the Bluebirds regained the lead on 34 minutes.
Tindle launched a free kick towards the edge of the City penalty area where Griffin headed the ball down and into the path of Toby Osman.
The midfielder switched the ball onto his left foot and beat Hardy with an excellent strike to the right of the diving City custodian.
It may not have been as spectacular as the goal Osman scored in the corresponding game last season, but it was a pretty fair challenger.
Cityâ€™s response was almost instantaneous but again luck was not on their side.
Ngoyi was set to break clear down the right when he was cynically scythed down by Jack Allwood.
From Comleyâ€™s free kick Wadkins headed powerfully home, but the effort was harshly rubbed out when linesman Alistair Phillips ruled that the City striker had shoved Tindle in the back.
Undeterred, City did score their second goal on 42 minutes.
A Comley corner of the City left was headed back out to him by Harvey. This time the City captain drove the ball low into a crowded goalmouth with the ball clipping Ngoyi and being prodded home at the back post by Bruce for his first goal in Cityâ€™s colours.
Three minutes later and the Saints were celebrating again when Shawâ€™s ball into the penalty area struck Harveyâ€™s upper left arm and referee Gareth Hubbard pointed to the spot.
Ngoyi duly sent John the wrong way from 12-yards to register his 14th goal in 19 games for the Saints.
St Albans trudged off at half time looking well in control but other than for a couple of early attacking forays soon after the restart they were well and truly second best for the rest of a very wet afternoon.
Chippenham attacked with renewed vigour and Hardy had to move swiftly to block Phillips with Joe McClennanâ€™s follow up being blocked by Eadie for Chippenhamâ€™s first corner of the game.
As the pressure mounted the Bluebirds had two half-hearted penalty appeals rejected, but the home side did score for a third time on 55 minutes when James Guthrie sent an angled shot past Hardy following McClennanâ€™s excellent cross-field pass.
Chippenham replaced bustling striker Griffin with Dean Griffiths on 62 minutes, while City withdrew Shaw and Ngoyi for Henry and Elliot Bailey, but neither of the new boys were able to make much of an impact.
Midway through the half Godfrey came within a coat of paint of restoring Cityâ€™s lead with an inspired piece of quick thinking.
Town keeper John raced out of his penalty area to head clear as Bailey sought to pounce.
The ball fell to Godfrey close on 30 yards out, with his second touch the former Watford player sent a stunning shot over the retreating keeper only for the ball to bounce up and strike the crossbar before dropping into Johnâ€™s grateful arms.
That, however, was but a brief moment of positive intent by St Albans, and almost immediately their goal was again under siege.
On 76 minutes Chippenhamâ€™s highest attendance for three months almost exploded as the Bluebirds regained the lead.
Hardy did well to dive to his left to push a well-placed Adie Harris free-kick out for throw-in, but it only momentarily slowed the Chippenham charge.
Osmanâ€™s throw was headed away by Eadie but only as far as Harvey who headed across goal to Tom Knighton.
The Town substitute then exchanged headers with McClennan before deftly lifting the winning goal over Hardy, much to the delight of some now bare-chested Norwegianâ€™s behind the goal.
Chippenham looked capable of making further in-roads into a frequently exposed City defence but the Bluebirds day was slightly soured when Phillips was stretchered off with a knee injury following an accidental clash with Comley.
With this result, which saw seven different players get on the scoresheet, Chippenham have now virtually secured Premier Division football at Hardenhuish Park for another year, while City slide down to tenth in the table, their lowest position since the opening day of the season.