ALL you need to know ahead of Bradford (Park Avenue)'s first Vanarama National League North match of the season against Gateshead.

Kick-off: Monday, October 5 (7:45pm)

Venue: Horsfall Stadium

Odds: Bradford 11/5, Gateshead 21/20, Draw 12/5

Opponent profile

Gateshead spent a decade in Step One of the non-league pyramid before suffering financial turmoil which resulted in forced relegation in 2019.

Former Newcastle United defender and player-manager Mike Williamson took over the helm ahead of their return back to the National League North.

He had great success under a more stable regime, reaching the playoffs thanks to the enforced points per game system.

After edging past Brackley Town on penalties in the quarters, a entertaining 5-3 loss to Boston United followed.

Form Guide

Both teams have only had the one competitive outing in 2020/21 so far, landing identical results against league rivals in the FA Cup second qualifying round.

Park Avenue did well to lead Spennymoor Town for almost 80 minutes, but conceded three late goals to exit the competition early.

While, Gateshead were knocked out by promotion hopefuls Chorley after suffering a 2-1 loss.

Team news

It was not only the defeat which would have hurt Mark Bower, but the number of injuries his side picked up.

Midfielders Isaac Marriott and Nicky Clee, and centre half Luca Havern all picked up "impact" knocks on Saturday, and with the short recovery time, are likely to miss out tonight.

As for the visitors, forward Ruairi Keating will be able to feature with his suspension for that sending off at Chorley being moved to their next game.

New signings Dan Ward and ex-Leeds United youngster Romario Vieira are expected to be involved in Mike Williamson's squad. Macauley Langstaff will aim to impress against his former team too.

Possible line-ups


GK Dan Atkinson, RB Ryan Toulson, CB Mitch Lund, CB Mark Ross, LB Matty Downing, CM Adam Nowakowski, CM Jake Hibbs CM Jordan Windass, RW Lewis Knight, ST Lewis Bradley, LW Brad Dockerty


GK James Montgomery, RB Alex Nicholson, CB Kallum Griffiths, CB Jake Cooper, LB George Smith, CM Jack Hunter, CM Nicky Deverdics , CM Greg Olley, RW Jordan Preston, ST Ruairi Keating, LW Macauley Langstaff.

Battle to watch: Knight v Olley

The pacey forward was Bradford's biggest attacking threat against Spennymoor, leading the line well especially in the first half. He got his rewards after a clinical finish.

It is likely Bower will aim to catch last season's playoff finishers on the counter and Knight could play a pivotal role in that tactic.

Meanwhile, the Heed could point to the creative spark of Olley. The Newcastle academy product recorded a club high of 15 assists last term.

Head to head

In total, the pair have met 32 times over a huge 97-year period. Bradford lead the league affairs with 16 wins, compared to Gateshead's nine.

Last season saw the most recent of their four draws. O'Donnell gave the hosts the lead before Knight levelled matters with half an hour to go.

Their other meeting in the campaign was scheduled post lockdown so it did not take place.