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Match Preview - Newcastle Town FC vs City of Liverpool FC

Promotion chasers City of Liverpool next up for ‘Castle

It seems barely possible but we’re already into the final six weeks of the season and there are just eight games to go in a campaign, which has veered from a promotion charge to plummeting down to the table to skirt the relegation places to somewhere in between.

Which brings us neatly to Saturday. City of Liverpool are a team on the charge and after a 2-0 win over Widnes last Saturday, they moved into the play-offs. They are unbeaten in seven, one of which was a 3-1 win against us in at Ellesmere Port at the end of February.

For our boys now, it’s a case of trying to secure as high a league finishing position as possible and to that end we’ve got some pretty tough assignments still to come, especially at home. The April Fool’s Day visit of champions elect Leek is the obvious one where they could secure the title on our patch. They’re no fools.

But as the adage goes, it’s one game at a time and that brings us back to City of Liverpool. There’ll definitely be changes for the second meeting of the two sides in less than three weeks.

Jake Twyford limped off in the 2-1 defeat at Stalybridge last week after an opponent fell on his knee. At the time it looked like it could be a season-ender, but it is thought to not be as bad an injury as first feared. We hope it might be 2-3 weeks on the injury list but we will be monitoring closely.

Isaac Graham – who scored our consolation goal against City of Liverpool in February – jarred his knee in training last Thursday but will be available for Saturday, as should Jack Sherratt who picked up a knock right at the final knockings of last Saturday’s defeat in east Manchester.

The gaffer expects us to bounce back from last weekend’s disappointment, but acknowledges that our opponents will have other ideas.

Bakes said: “I’ve said before that City of Liverpool are a very dangerous opponent and they are finally starting to show that through their league position. But having said that, we tend to do well when we play the best teams at home – clean sheet wins against Runcorn and Prescot Cables show that.

“My challenge to the players is simple, I want to win every game. Playing great football is a bonus but winning games is the currency we’re all judged on. Some of the football we played at Stalybridge was outstanding, but we still came away with nothing!”

“I’m working on bringing in a couple of players to help us through the last phase of the season and I want everyone connected to the club to be assured that I will continue to work hard to make sure we finish as high as we can in the league.”

Jake Avery will be looking to extend his phenomenal scoring run of eight goals in eight games and is now the club’s leading scorer for the season despite only joining in January. As a team we’ll certainly need to show a lot more efficiency in front of goal though and let’s hope that starts on Saturday.

Come on ‘Castle!


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