The FA Cup might be taking most of the headlines this weekend, but there are still a lot of games in the Conference North and South taking place. Here’s a quick preview:
There are nine matches in Conference North tomorrow, with the top four all in action. Leaders Hyde travel to Boston United, who currently lie in tenth place. Hyde have won their last three league games without conceding a goal after a run of four without a win. Boston, meanwhile, have a decent home record, with three wins and three draws from their eight matches at York Street. Hyde should pick up all three points, although they won’t have things all their own way.
Second placed Stalybridge Celtic are the only top four club to be playing in front of their own fans this weekend, as they entertain Histon United. Celtic have only lost once this season, a 0-2 reverse at Colwyn Bay in October, but have won two and drawn one since that defeat, and scored ten goals in the process. They boast the second and third top scorers in the division, Connor Jennings and Phil Marsh, who have 27 league goals between them. Histon lost 4-0 at Hyde last time out, and so a trip to the second placed team is probably not high on the wishlist for them! They did win the two previous games, but lost three of the five before that. It’s hard to imagine anything other than a comfortable home win.
Third and fourth placed Gainsborough Trinity and Guisely are both on their travels, with Trinity going to North Wales to take on mid-table Colwyn Bay and Guisely making the trip to second bottom Eastwood Town. My money is on a Guisely victory, but Colwyn Bay will take something from their match with Gainsborough.
Full fixture list for Conference North, all games kick off at 3pm:
Boston Utd v Hyde
Colwyn Bay v Gainsborough
Eastwood Town v Guiseley
Gloucester v Harrogate Town
Nuneaton v Workington
Solihull Moors v Bishop’s Stortford
Stalybridge v Histon
Vauxhall Motors v Droylsden
Worcester v Altrincham
There are six matches in the South, with fourth placed Dartford the highest placed team playing. They host mid-table Weston-Super-Mare knowing they will go second with a win. Over the last few games, Dartford have been alternating wins and defeats, and going by that run a defeat is next in the sequence. That doesn’t seem very likely though, and I would expect to see the points stay with the home side.
Game of the day though could be at Meadow Park, where eighth placed Boreham Wood host Dover, lying in fifth. A win for the home side would see them within a point of their opponents, while a defeat for Dover would see them slip down to sixth on goal difference, even though sixth or seventh aren’t playing! Bottom club Thurrock are not in action which means they could find themselves cut adrift if the two clubs above them can win. That will be no mean feat for either Hampton & Richmond Borough or Staines Town however, as they both travel to teams just outside the top ten. Borough go to Dorchester, while Staines are at Tonbridge. It is hard to see anything other than home wins, although one of them might just scrape a draw.
Full fixture list for Conference South, kick off 3pm:
Boreham Wood v Dover
Dartford v Weston-S-Mare
Dorchester v Hampton & Richmond
Farnborough v Eastleigh
Havant and Waterlooville v Eastbourne Boro
Tonbridge Angels v Staines Town