Alfreton Town v AFC Rushden and Diamonds

Alfreton Town v AFC Rushden and Diamonds

Thursday Sep 14, 2017

The Reds take a break from Vanarama National League North action this coming Saturday when they entertain AFC Rushden and Diamonds in the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, at the Impact Arena, kick-off 3pm.

Rushden currently play in the Evo-stik Southern League, South East Division, two steps below ourselves. By no means are we guaranteed an easy game as before last Saturday Rushden topped the table having won three and drawn one of their opening four games. However, visitors Beaconsfield Town upset the apple cart with a 2-1 win. This was after Rushden had taken the lead by Darryl Smith after 37 minutes. This was after experienced former Northampton Town centre half, Liam Dolman missed a penalty hitting the post after 23 minutes.

Beaconsfield turned the game on its head with goals in the second half from Elliott Carey after 63 minutes and Charlie Lasasso on 84 minutes, resulting in Rushden dropping down to 5th place in the table.

The AFC Rushden and Diamonds line-up was: Ben Heath, Blaize Punter, Ben Ford, Sam Brown, Liam Dolman, Ben Farrell, Claudiu Hoban, Joe Curtis, Chris Dillo, Nabil Shariff, Darryl Smith

Sustiitutes that came off the bench were, Luke Fairlamb, Fernando Bell-Toxtle and Tom Lorraine.

A player to watch out for is the much travelled Nabil Shariff who so far this season has bagged ten goals in all competitions.

The Diamonds entered the competition at the Preliminary Round stage where they had a comfortable 4-0 win at neighbours Wellingborough Town. This was followed by a 3-2 win at Tividale in the First Qualifying Round.

Under their old guise many of you will remember Rushden and Diamonds competing in the football league at their splendid Nene Park home. Recent seasons have seen them reform as AFC Rushden and Diamonds, last season playing at the Dog and Duck ground in Wellingborough.

This season has seen the club return to their roots back in the town of Rushden to their Hayden Road ground. This was the ground where they played as Rushden FC before they amalgamated with Irthingborough Diamonds to form Rushden and Diamonds FC.

Below is a  picture taken at last week's game showing the old wooden grandstand that is about to undergo refurbishment, so that it is safe to use.

Bill Draper's anecdote of the week informs us that Alfreton have never played Rushden and Diamonds before. We did, however play once at their Nene Park ground ( now demolished), in our first season in the Conference, defeating Kettering Town 2-0. Kettering where ground sharing with Rushden at the time. This will also be the first time the club has played two consecutive games against teams from Northamptonshire.

Alfreton are operating reduced admission for the game with prices being £10 for Adults, £7 Concessions and £1 for Under 16s.

Please also note that there will be no segregation for the fixture, with the visitors able to access the ground from the North Street and Alma street entrances.


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