Chesterfield v Barnet
A meeting on Friday night between two sides hoping to maintain their unbeaten records.
Barnet lead the division having won three and drawn one of their first four matches, Dean Brennan’s summer recruitment drive clearly paying dividends. It’s difficult to look too much into their overall chance creation numbers given Barnet have led 2-0 in every match this season but their goalscoring record is helped by their xG per shot – only Dorking Wanderers and Yeovil Town can match Barnet’s. However, the three goals they have conceded this season have come on the road and this should be the toughest they have faced this season so far.
Chesterfield were bang at it during pre-season and took that into the new campaign, taking 2-0 leads away at Dorking Wanderers and Notts County before being pegged back, the first of those coming due a red card, and seeing off Aldershot Town and Wrexham at home without conceding, the latter of those a dominant display. Cook has changed shape slightly in recent matches, moving from a 4-2-3-1 to 4-4-2 with Akwasi Asante back fit and Kabongo Tshimanga being eased back into action – he will likely see the pitch at the weekend.
Dean Brennan wants his side to be capable of matching their opposition physically and I think this will be a step too far at this stage of their development.
Eastleigh v Southend United
Only three sides have been involved in matches with less goals than Eastleigh’s seven and this weekend’s visitors Southend United are one of them.
The Spitfires have had a positive start to the campaign, their opening day loss at Wrexham followed by seven points from three matches, two 1-0 victories either side of a 1-1 draw with Dagenham and Redbridge in which they scored a last-minute equaliser. Those low numbers match their early chance creation record, recording the lowest xG in the division and being in the bottom ten for xGA.
It’s been a frustrating campaign so far for Southend United, who have been tipped by many as dark horses for a top seven finish after a positive end to last season. There have been just four goals in their matches to date, two scored and two conceded. None of their matches have seen three or more goals scored and their victory against Oldham Athletic last weekend was the first time a team recorded an xG of 1.5 or higher this season. They have signed Aaron Cosgrave to boost their attack but are still finding their feet in the final third with Chris Wreh, Dan Mooney, Callum Powell, Jack Bridge not quite nailing their starting spots yet and neither Harry Cardwell or Jake Hyde fit.
Two sides looking to build upon solid foundations in the early weeks of the campaign and it could make this a tight affair.
Maidstone United v Torquay United
Two sides who picked up four points in their opening two matches before losing the last two.
There has been a clear difference in home and away performance for Hakan Hayrettin’s Maidstone United side, on the back foot on opening day at Altrincham and last time out at Wrexham, who thumped them 5-0. However, their performances against York City and Dorking Wanderers at the Gallagher Stadium were positive, scoring four goals and taking 37 shots compared to the 20 conceded. Their home form was excellent during their promotion winning season, winning 16 and drawing one of their 20 games – their 3G pitch also gives them something of an advantage.
It’s not the start Gary Johnson had hoped for, albeit one he would have been wise to expect given the number of changes made to his squad over the summer. They have only scored once, from a set-piece against FC Halifax Town, while also conceding twice. The most concerning aspect of their season to date is the number of chances being conceded – Torquay have the worst xGA in the division and their two away matches have seen them take 11 shots and concede 45. Johnson has admitted that Corie Andrews and Asa Hall are not 100% fit yet while Ross Marshall, Dan Martin and Aaron Jarvis remain absent.
Solihull Moors v Dorking Wanderers
This should be the most exciting game of the weekend with the only two sides to hit double figures for goals facing off at the ARMCO Arena.
The expectation was that Solihull Moors would start the season slowly but their games have been thoroughly entertaining, scoring four in both of their away matches at Aldershot Town and Scunthorpe United, the latter of which they won having been 3-0 down. They have recorded the best overall xG in the division to date and their ten goals are proof that their attacking options remain as potent as they come in the National League.
Dorking Wanderers have continued where they left off following a National League South promotion campaign during which they scored 101 goals and conceded 53. They have scored ten and conceded eight in their opening four matches and it’s no surprise given the numbers they are putting up – they are in the top five for overall xG and bottom five for overall xGA. There have been over 2.5 goals in all four of their matches this season.
Not only do both sides have previous for scoring and conceding goals, they also come into the game with defensive issues. Solihull Moors have been without Alex Gudger and defensive midfielders Kyle Storer and Joey Jones while Fiacre Kelleher was withdrawn last weekend with an Achilles complaint. Dorking Wanderers, meanwhile, have lost captain Barry Fuller and defensive pair Ed Harris and Jamie Cheadle – arguably their first-choice back three.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
18+ please gamble responsibly.
Back the Four and Five Star Selections as an Accumulator on Betfair ⬇️
*Bet link only appears when accessing from mobile.
Haven’t got a Betfair account? You’re in luck…
Sign up to Betfair and get a full refund if your first bet loses. Grab an account through the offer below and place £20 on the 5/1 National League Best Bets Accumulator. Here are the two possible outcomes:
Or you get your £20 stake back as cash