Captain Josh Evans is used to success at the Eagles but even he is surprised they have overcome off-field distractions this year to be on the cusp of another Northern NSW NPL premiership.
And he would love to secure the club's record 13th NNSW top-division title against the team who broke their streak last year on Saturday at Cooks Square Park.
The Eagles, on 30 points, will take a fifth premiership in six years if they beat Maitland in the 3.30pm game. Next-best Broadmeadow, who have the bye, are on 25 with two games each to play.
Cooks Square Park was the scene of a key win for eventual premiers Maitland against Edgeworth last season. The Eagles led 1-0 but Maitland struck with two late goals to score an unlikely victory. The Magpies went on to finish five points clear of Edgeworth, Jaffas and Magic.
"I definitely haven't forgotten last year when we were pushing forward trying to get a winner and they got us on the counterattack and beat us," said Evans, who was man of the match in Edgeworth's 2-0 grand final revenge over Maitland last year.
"We definitely want to do it this weekend because we don't want to have to rely on other results next week and keep waiting. Plus, we've had a few injuries of late, so if we can get the job done now, we can relax and start focusing on the finals."
Edgeworth have dominated despite the exit of coach Damian Zane, who guided them to four premierships, five grand finals and three championships. He quit on season's eve and will coach Broadmeadow next year. His replacement, Keelan Hamilton, left after three rounds, leaving Josh Rose to take on a player-coach role. Adding to the drama is speculation Eagles players will join Zane at Magic next year.
However, the Eagles' have remained as good as ever on the pitch, much to the surprise of Evans, who has been with the club since before their grand final streak.
"It's been a turbulent year to say the least, obviously with a lot of uncertainty with coaches, with who's staying, who's leaving," he said. "To keep winning and keep all the stuff off the park aside and to keep focusing on each week was difficult. Honestly, I'm surprised that we're in the position that we are after everything that's gone on.
"I try to get across to the team, and others do as well, that we can only control what we can control. And our job is just to go out and play the game we love. We've focused on that and it's got us here."
Evans works with the RAAF and could be transferred but said "if I'm here next year, I'll be at Edgy".
"I think we've retained maybe 80, 90 per cent, but I know with a coach leaving ... I would not be surprised if we lose a couple of players, and even a couple more," he said. "But we'll retain the core guys and just build around them."
Maitland will be trying to keep their top-five hopes alive. They are fourth on 16 points ahead of Jaffas, Weston (15), Azzurri (14) and Valentine (11). Also Saturday, Jaffas host Lake Macquarie (2.30pm) and Valentine travel to Adamstown (4.30pm). On Sunday, Azzurri are home against Weston (2.30pm).