STOCKPORT COUNTY v ALFRETON TOWN - PREVIEW
Friday Dec 16, 2011
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 17th, 2011, 3pm
Saturday, December 17th, 2011
Blue Square Bet Premier Division
Stockport County v Alfreton Town
by Kev Miles
ALFRETON Town face their third Blue Square Bet Premier Division relegation zone six-pointer in three weeks when they travel to take on Stockport County on Saturday.
The Reds have recorded 3-2 home wins over both Hayes & Yeading United and Newport County within that time span to close the gap on the sides above them.
But, in the last game before Christmas, the Reds face another tough away game against a side who have slipped into the relegation zone alongside them, a run which cost summer appointment Didi Hamann his job as manager a few weeks ago and has brought former boss Jim Gannon back to the club as director of football.
Reds manager Nicky Law will have a full strength squad to choose from with the exception of central defender Leigh Franks who suffered a hamstring injury in the midweek Derbyshire Senior Cup game at Gresley FC which will keep him out for around three to four weeks.
If the Reds are to return with any points reward they are going to have to avoid a tenth straight away defeat in the league.
Relegated from League Two last season, Stockport have not adapted well to life in non league's top table and they currently lie in 22nd place in the table with 19 points from 24 games, one place and two points ahead of Alfreton.
However, they have only picked up one point from a 3-3 draw with Hayes & Yeading
With recent injuries to Carl Piergianni and Nabil Bounab, ‘The Hatters' have signed defender Joe Connor on non-contract terms this week and it is expected he will play some part, even if it is off the bench. Euan Holden may also be a doubt through injury and compassionate leave.
On home soil, Stockport have won just twice, drawn three times and lost seven games, picking up nine points from a possible 36.
The wins have came early doors against Kettering Town (1-0) and Grimsby Town (2-0). They shared the points with Ebbsfleet United and Luton Town (both 1-1) and Hayes & Yeading United (3-3).
Defeats have been tasted at home against Mansfield Town (0-1), Fleetwood Town (2-4), York City (1-2), Darlington (3-4), Forest Green Rovers (0-1), Southport (0-1) and Gateshead (0-1).
County's last outing was on Tuesday evening when they went down 2-1 at Conference North side Stalybridge Celtic in an FA Trophy first round replay at Bower Fold.
A victory for Stockport could lift them out of the relegation zone and an Alfreton win could see them to within one win of getting out of it for the first time in months.
Stockports team was: Matthew Glennon, Joe Edwards, Andy Halls, Daniel O'Donnell, Danny Rowe (Aaron Cole), Chris Blackburn, Carl Piergianni, Sean McConville, Jon Nolan (Sam Sheridan), Tom Elliott, Ryan McCann (Cameron Darkwah).
Subs not used: Mark Halstead and Martin Gritton.
Top scorers for Stockport in the league are Nick Chadwick with six, Tom Elliott with five and Michael Paton who has four. Chadwick is currently on loan at Plymouth Argyle.
Current form: (latest result last)
Alfreton Town: L D L D L W L L L W D L L D L L L L L D W L L W
Stockport County: D W D D D L D D W D D L L D L L W L D L L L L L
Stockport County in 2011/12 so far . . .
12/8/2011 A Forest Green Rovers BSP 1-1, att: 1,848
16/8/2011 H Kettering Town BSP 1-0, att: 3,429
20/8/2011 H Ebbsfleet United BSP 1-1, att: 3,674
23/8/2011 A Kidderminster Harriers BSP 1-1, att: 1,886
26/8/2011 A Lincoln City BSP 1-1, att: 2,152
29/8/2011 H Mansfield Town BSP 0-1, att: 3,571
2/9/2011 H Luton Town BSP 1-1, att: 3,389
10/9/2011 A AFC Telford United BSP 1-1, att: 2,375
17/9/2011 H Grimsby Town BSP 2-0, att: 3,943
20/9/2011 A Newport County BSP 1-1, att: 1,205
24/9/2011 A Tamworth BSP 1-1, att: 1,381
27/9/2011 H Fleetwood Town BSP 2-4, att: 3,023
01/10/2011 H York City BSP 1-2, att: 3,753
06/10/2011 A Cambridge United BSP 2-2, att: 2,047
11/10/2011 H Darlington BSP 3-4, att: 2,671
15/10/2011 A Wrexham BSP 0-4, att: 3,874
18/10/2011 A Bath City BSP 2-0, att: 919
22/10/2011 H Forest Green Rovers BSP 0-1, att: 3,391
29/10/2011 A Southport FA Cup 4Q 0-1, att: n/k
05/11/2011 H Hayes & Yeading United BSP 3-3, att: 2,804
12/11/2011 A Ebbsfleet United BSP 1-2, att: 1,119
19/11/2011 A Fleetwood Town BSP 1-2, att: 3,021
26/11/2011 H Southport BSP 0-1, att: 4,540
29/11/2011 A Grimsby Town BSP 0-7, att: 2,254
06/12/2011 H Gateshead BSP 0-1, att: 2,366
10/12/2011 H Stalybridge Celtic FA Trophy 1, 2-2, att: 1,690
13/12/2011 A Stalybridge Celtic FA Trophy 1R 1-2, att: 1,149
Kick-off at Edgeley Park is 3pm
Alfreton Town Supporters' Association transport departs at 10.15am and seats can be booked by contacting Mark Thorpe on 01773 836251.