Non-league football weekend previews

First published in Sport by

Brighouse Town will be hoping to give their tilt for promotion from the Toolstation Northern Counties East Premier Division another boost with a home win tomorrow.

Town are looking to go one better than last season, when they finished runners-up in a division that has no play-offs and just one promotion place.

Paul Quinn’s men won 5-1 at Armthorpe Welfare last Saturday and another win would see them through the 50-point barrier.

Town have seven games in hand on the leaders but have just 13 points to make up so are very much still the dark horses.

Tomorrow sees them hosting Heanor Town, who could dent Town’s hopes. The Derbyshire outfit are immediately behind seventh-placed Brighouse and trail by just goal difference but they have played six games more.

The area’s other three clubs in the top tier all face away games but will be expected to win as they play the bottom three clubs.

Albion Sports slipped from third to ninth in the congested top half of the table with a defeat last weekend.

Albion were beaten 3-1 at home by Basford United to leave them, like Brighouse, as one of three clubs on 47 points.

Albion’s hosts are Lincoln Moorlands Railway, who were beaten 8-1 at Thackley on Saturday. Lincoln are second from bottom, six points from safety, but have the worst goal difference in the league, minus 113 after their towelling at Dennyfield.

Thackley are fifth, just two points better off than Brighouse and Albion and have been in the promotion hunt all season but had a poor December. They will be looking to get January, and 2014, off to a good start when they journey to Winterton Rangers.

Winterton are third from bottom, just six points ahead of Lincoln, but they have a worse goal difference than Nostell, who are rock bottom.

Nostell host Liversedge and are stranded at the foot of the table going into the game but are just two points behind Lincoln.

Sedge are a lowly 17th and are averaging just one point per game after 27 starts.

Eccleshill boss Lee Duxbury has been without a lot of his squad over the holiday period but a victory last time out moved the Eagles back into the top five in Division One.

That victory was at second-bottom Appleby Frodingham and tomorrow sees the reverse fixture so Duxbury will be hoping his side bank another maximum.

Silsden’s mini revival of three straight wins in the North West Counties Premier Division came to an end on December 21 and back-to-back defeats since then have plunged them back into the doldrums.

The Cobbydalers are in 18th place going into tomorrow’s home game against Ashton Athletic, who are in a buoyant ninth spot.

Silsden are just six points above the drop zone while Ashton could go seventh with a win.

Cobbydalers’ spokesman Jim Rosser said: “We are not out of trouble yet and we only have 17 games left this season. I think only eight of those are at home so we have to make the most of these opportunities.

“Andy (manager Geary) is doing his best with a young squad but he has got a job on his hands. The rest of us are just hoping the lads pick up enough points to keep us in this division this season.”

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