Following the disappointing midweek last minute defeat that eliminated us from the Whitworth cup, the team are desperate to get back onto the pitch and rid themselves of the memory of that 2-1 defeat against Knaresborough Town Reserves. On Saturday we have just that chance when we travel to play Howden Clough. Kick-off for this match is 2pm and the forecast shows a decent, but cold day!
With a gap of eight points between us and leaders Hall Green United, this game presents a vital chance for us to try and close the space on the top five clubs. A win could see us climb one place into fifth, whilst a defeat will see us remain in sixth, but should other results go against us, we could be looking at five point difference between us and Hartshead.
Our hosts are struggling in the lower reaches of the division, but having played them already this season (we won 3-2 thanks to goals from Joe Turley, Charlie Yates and Luke Dubery - see match report here), we know that they are a team that are more than capable of producing a performance and a result. On their own pitch, they have managed one win, one draw and five defeats. They have scored 10 goals (avg. 1.42 goals per game), but have conceded more than double that with 22 (avg. 3.14 goals per game) hitting the back of their net so far.
A check of the FA stats shows that Howden have a group of goalscorers clustered together. At present, George Brook and Stefan Connor have five each whilst close behind are the duo of Austin Broadbent and Nathan Hallas with four.
Both teams are suspension free and with the return of Sam Straker and Danny Grannon into the reserve team last weekend, Manager Dan Marshall will be keeping an eye on the duo’s progress to see when and if he can integrate them into the first team. He, alongside Ben Lawrence and David Campbell, will be running their eyes over several players that gained knocks during recent matches. Hopefully the gaffer will be able to name a very strong squad for the game.
The referee for this match will be Mr Kevin Kelly. The man in black has also been in charge of seven other games so far this campaign (as one as being an Assistant Referee in another match). In these contests, it appears that he likes the game to flow, and as such, has only issued one yellow and one red card so far!
Should you wish to watch the game, the address that you will need is Batley Sports & Tennis Centre, Windmill Lane, Howden Clough, Batley, WF17 0QD
League Form (over last five games)
Howden L L L W L
Rangers W W D W W
Leading League Goalscorers
Howden George Brook & Stefan Connor 5 goals
Rangers Roman Neal 6 goals
Unfortunately, due to a previous commitment, there will be no match media for this game. We would like to apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause.