AFC Fylde v Spennymoor Town (National League North)
Fylde got back to winning ways on Saturday, knocking 3 past a struggling Bradford Park Avenue side. To no one’s surprise, Nick Haughton found himself on the scoresheet twice, he will no doubt be a threat come Tuesday evening. James Rowe’s men will be looking to maintain their position at the top of the table, and I’m confident they’ll do it. The momentum that their attack has at the moment is unmatched in the league, scoring 6 goals in their last 2 games. Fylde have had an inconsistent defensive record so far, keeping 4 clean sheets from 10 – thankfully this should coincide with Spennymoor’s issues scoring goals this season.
Spennymoor have only scored more than one goal twice this season, both coming in draws. They’re yet to really find themselves a proven goalscorer, Glen Taylor and Jude Oyibo have found the back of the net on a few occasions – although neither have exactly set the world alight. There may be some momentum with the away side scoring a 90th minute equaliser on Saturday, but it must be considered that Fylde will have much more quality in their ranks.
Fylde will be disappointed if they don’t win this game, they beat Spennymoor home and away last season; they’ve only improved since. There’s quite a lot riding on this game as well, King’s Lynn are breathing down their necks being only one point behind them – therefore the home advantage should play well into their favour. They are also lucky enough to be suffering no major injuries, meaning Fylde have very little excuse to come away with any less than three points on Tuesday.
Weymouth v Havant and Waterlooville (National League South)
Weymouth have had a disappointing start to the season to say the least, gaining 2 points from 9 games. Their two draws came from Hemel Hempstead and Hungerford Town, both teams in the bottom half and coincidentally Weymouth were playing against 10 men in both games. There are seemingly some issues going on behind the scenes at Weymouth which are reflective in their performances on the pitch. In light of this, Havant will be looking to take full advantage. Maybe with the exception of Ebbsfleet, Weymouth couldn’t ask for a worse fixture right now. There is a marginal possibility that the home advantage could lead to a freak result, although I highly doubt it considering Havant’s form this season.
Havant and Waterlooville go into this game currently unbeaten in the league. They’ve played 9, won 7 and drawn 2. It could be considered that the two draws were both away games, although their opposition was considerably stronger in both. Jake McCarthy will be seen as a threat towards Weymouth, he’ll be looking to get himself on the scoresheet for the 7th time this season. He is only one of the many quality players that Paul Doswell’s side line up with – James Roberts has also shown spells of quality so far.
When looking at this fixture on paper, only one result can avail. Although, that is simply not how football works. The odds for this should be good due to Weymouth having the home advantage. Despite this, Havant should simply have too much quality and momentum to drop points in this game.
Taunton Town v Bath City (National League South)
Taunton have had an average start to the season, gaining 13 points from a possible 27. They tend to have inconsistencies within their results, beating teams above their quality and then dropping points in games they’d be expected to win. For example, they beat Chippenham Town who are level on points with Bath although then lost to Slough – a side that Bath defeated 5-1. A clear issue for Taunton, like many teams, is that they’re yet to find a strong goalscorer. Their goals this season have arisen via a variety of players. What this allows me to identify is that Taunton play with a style of football that allows players to get up the pitch and fill the box. Arguably, this shows a more aggressive style of football than a direct form of play. However, it must be considered that Taunton have struggled to score at times this season. This is mainly down to a lack of chances being taken.
Bath came off the back of a 6 goal thriller against Oxford City, the game finishing 3-3. In something that’s becoming a weekly occurrence at this point, Cody Cooke and Alex Fletcher found the back of the net, putting them 2nd and 3rd in the league for top goalscorer. It’s very likely that Bath will find themselves on the scoresheet, having scored 20 goals this season (3rd for goals scored behind Ebbsfleet and Havant who remain unbeaten.) What’s becoming frustrating for Bath fans is the gaps in the defence that leads to them being constantly caught out. They’ve only kept one clean sheet so far this season which is disappointing considering they’ve only lost twice.
Bath should be winning this game, although I believe they will be conceding here. Taunton have the home advantage and this game will generally define whether they’ve had a good or bad start to the season – especially when it’s so clear that Bath will make defensive mistakes that can be taken advantage of.
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