National League Preview 13 January 2018

With the 2nd Round of the FA Trophy taking place this weekend, only three National League games are scheduled, but it is a chance for all six sides to pick up some valuable points…

AFC Fylde vs Guiseley @15:00

A draw at home to Chester on Tuesday night stalled some of The Coasters’ momentum, but it is still four League games without a loss for the 11th placed side, and they are still in reach of the playoffs, six points off with two games in hand on Dagenham and Redbridge who sit 7th.  The fact that Fylde have only won four League games at Mill Field will worry some, but with the League’s top scorer in Danny Rowe on hand, fans will always be confident on getting something from a game.  Visitors Guiseley had their home game against Gateshead on Tuesday postponed due to a frozen pitch, so should be fresher, but are three without a League win following last weekend’s loss at Eastleigh, typical of a season where they have picked up nine of a possible 42 away points.  The Lions are the only side in the division to have conceded 50 League goals and have scored exactly half that number, only Torquay scoring fewer.  However, despite sitting 23rd, Guiseley are only nine points off safety with two games in hand on 20th placed Barrow.

Torquay Utd vs Eastleigh @15:00

Torquay are bottom of the League, 11 points off safety, with a sizeable amount of goal difference to make up.  They have lost their last two League matches to make it six without a League win, with only three points taken in that time and only two goals scored, no surprise for a side who are the lowest scorers in the division (23 from 28 matches, conceding 45 – almost double!).  Gulls fans will also be well aware that they have the worst home record in the National League.  Eastleigh are 15th, a 4-2 win against Guiseley on Saturday making it five without a League defeat.  However, Andy Hessenthaler will want to improve The Spitfires’ form on the road with only three away League wins.

Woking vs Tranmere Rovers @15:00

A remarkable 4-4 draw with Maidstone on Saturday continued a run of six without a League win for The Cards with only one win in the last 12 National League matches.  However, Woking can look to a solid home record in the division which has seen them win seven, draw three and lose four.  After a phenomenal December, Tranmere have no League wins in 2018, with a draw to Barrow following up a loss to Fylde.  Both of these games were on the road, and the away run continues with this trip.  It is perhaps no surprise that Rovers didn’t win the opening matches of 2018 as they have only won three away League games all season.  The visitors can, however, lean on a defence that has conceded only 26 in their 28 National League matches, but memories of conceding five to Fylde must still haunt them.