KEVIN Ellison believes Newport County AFC togetherness has got them to Wembley and is confident it will help them take the finish the job.

The Exiles will return to the third tier of English football if they can overcome Morecambe in the League Two play-off final this afternoon.

Michael Flynn's squad have shown spirit all season to combine a promotion push with a pair of lucrative cup runs that were ended on penalties by Premier League pair Brighton and Newcastle.

They had to dig deep from a winter slump to finish the league campaign with a flourish to earn a play-off place and came through a huge test of character in the semi-final at Forest Green Rovers.

They saw a 2-0 first leg lead cancelled out inside nine minutes at the New Lawn, then fell behind and after rallying to lead the tie then were taken to extra time by a late leveller.

County dug deep to win the topsy-turvy tie and earn a shootout against the Shrimps, with more spirit needed at Wembley.

Ellison has played in the Football League across three decades and the 42-year-old, a Morecambe legend, knows there is something special about this Exiles side.

DELIGHT: Kevin Ellison fired home a cracker for County at Forest Green Rovers

DELIGHT: Kevin Ellison fired home a cracker for County at Forest Green Rovers

"This is up there with the best dressing rooms that I've been in. From day one when I walked in you could get that feeling," said the midfielder.

"I've been in plenty of dressing rooms and the togetherness here is unbelievable.

"When you see the spirit from the Forest Green game and throughout the season it is unbelievable but in a normal season with fans in there would have been even more.

"We've got some characters in there, people who push others on. I'd like to think I play my part in that by helping others. I feel I can affect things off the pitch as much as off it.

"The togetherness is unbelievable and that has played a part in where we are and why we are playing today."

Ellison came off the bench to score County's opener at Forest Green and is set for another cameo at Wembley.

The veteran will be fuelled by the desire to prove a point (again) to Morecambe boss Derek Adams after he froze him out in Lancashire.

However, the Scouser insists it's about a winner's medal and not match action.

"I won't be selfish," he said. "You want to play and make an impact but it's about the gaffer and how he goes about it with his team.

"If someone was to say that I'd go to Wembley, you won't play but you will get promoted then I'd snap their hands off.

"It's not about me, it's about the club and us going up. I played my part at Forest Green to get us to Wembley and if I can get my hands on the trophy then I'll be happy."

REVENGE: Kevin Ellison celebrates his goal for County at Morecambe in front of Derek Adams

REVENGE: Kevin Ellison celebrates his goal for County at Morecambe in front of Derek Adams

Ellison has done plenty of media this week after one of the scenes of the season at Morecambe, when he scored the clinching goal in a 3-1 win and then celebrated in front of Adams.

"My celebration was pure emotion that had built up for months and months," said Ellison, who made 391 appearances and scored 88 goals for Morecambe between 2011 and 2020.

"That's gone now, this game is Newport County against Morecambe, not Kevin Ellison versus their manager, it's our club versus their club.

"I'm doing my utmost to make an impact for Newport and hopefully it will be a happy ending."

And Ellison knows County will have to dig deep against a Morecambe side who have upset the odds all season.

A team that have traditionally battled at the bottom pushed Cambridge and Bolton all the way in the race for automatic promotion before beating Tranmere in the semi-finals.

"They have been unbelievable. At the start of the season they would have been one of the teams that you definitely wouldn't have put up there," said Ellison.

"Credit to them, they are a tough team and we won't be taking them lightly even though we have beaten them twice this season.

"They have got some really, really good players and they are a big, strong physical team. We aren't taking anything for granted.

"This is a one-off game and we will be rolling our sleeves up to get the win."

CELEBRATION: Kevin Ellison celebrates with Ryan Haynes at Forest Green

CELEBRATION: Kevin Ellison celebrates with Ryan Haynes at Forest Green

Whatever the result, Ellison has no plans to retire and hopes to remain in the Football League as a 43-year-old.

"Age is just a number and I'm taking each year as it comes but I want to continue playing. I feel good so let's see what the future holds," said Ellison, who spent the start of last week doing his Uefa pro licence coaching course at St George's Park.

"I look at what I have got and what I can offer to the dressing room and I think I'm squeezing out every last drop of my ability.

"I was never a major lover of drink, but if I had a drink I'd be sick for three days. Now, if I have a drink, I'm sick for six days so I've given it up.

"I look after myself better, I eat better and I recover better. I am into my yoga, which always helps with my mental health.

"I changed because I felt I needed to keep up with the lads. I eat more, but I eat healthy stuff.

"I will have a portion of pasta that might be enough for two or three people, but I don't put weight on because of the work I do.

"I continue to try and better myself daily - I am 42 but learning every day.

"I am around new coaches in Wayne Hatswell, Danny Elliott and the gaffer so I can still learn a lot and I still think that I can push myself."

That's what Ellison will do one last time to try and ensure a terrific season ends with Wembley celebrations.