Woking v Southport
3pm on Saturday 20 December 2014
The Cards will be anxious to secure maximum points from this game in order to stay in the play-off places. It seems unlikely that the Sandgrounders will be distracted by the prospect of their FA Cup Third Round tie at Derby County: manager Gary Brabin will have them focused solely on their precarious league position. Take a break from Christmas shopping and come on down to Kingfield to support Garry Hill’s side in this crucial home game!
Remember that a road closure near the ground may lead to delays if you’re travelling by car: see the news item of 12 November for more details.
The Cards will be heartened by their 2-0 win over Eastleigh in the FA Trophy last Saturday – achieved without top scorer Scott Rendell, who was still recovering from his ankle injury. Although Josh Payne – back to his best form in midfield – and Jack Marriott did the business in Scott’s absence, Cards fans will be hoping that Scott is available again on Saturday to lead the line. If so, Garry Hill should have virtually a full squad to choose from – apart, that is, from the long-term absentees, Mark Ricketts and Jake Cole.
Woking presently sit in 4th place in the table but Grimsby, who are at home to Forest Green Rovers on Friday evening, could move above them before kick-off. Bristol Rovers in third place, one point ahead of Woking, are also in action on Friday, at home to seventh-placed Gateshead.
It’s been another season of struggle for the Sandgrounders in the league, with Martin Foyle being relieved of his post and replaced in early October by Gary Brabin, who has previously managed Cambridge United and Luton Town as well as Southport briefly. It’s been a different story in the FA Cup, with Southport overcoming Tamworth (on penalties after a replay) Dagenham and Redbridge (in a replay) and Eastleigh to secure a mouthwatering tie at Pride Park.
Southport won only two of their first eight league games and then, in September, lost four in a row. A good away win followed at Grimsby Town but the final nail in Foyle’s coffin was the Cards’ 5-2 away win at Haig Avenue on 4 October. Brabin has succeeded in steadying the ship somewhat, although league wins have still been hard to come by recently, with only one in the last five league games. On Tuesday night Southport lost 2-0 at Wrexham in an FA Trophy replay, with Scott Kay being sent off after 33 minutes: he will consequently miss Saturday’s game.
Southport presently sit in 20th place in the table, one point above Alfreton Town but with a game or two in hand on most clubs around them.
Richard Brodie, with nine goals, is top scorer for the Sandgrounders. Other well-known names in the Port squad include Clayton McDonald, defender Luke Foster and former Stockport County striker Danny Hattersley. Keeper David Raya Martin is on loan from Blackburn Rovers.
Over 65s and Students with a valid NUS card: £10
The Club’s classy 64-page all-colour programme is a great ‘buy’, with its interesting articles, stunning photos, soft laminate cover and high quality ‘finish’. Saturday’s edition includes all the latest news from the Academy; a welcome to Geoff Chapple Lounge special guest, Rod Wallace; memories of a game in which the Cards hit six; and an overview of all the Club’s fantastic community work in 2014. And, of course, there is a round-up of all the recent Vanarama Conference and FA Trophy games and much more, including match reports, previews and news of the Club’s commercial initiatives. If you can’t get to the game, you can order a copy from the Club Shop on email@example.com
Woking 2 Southport 0
8 March 2014
The Cards, boosted by their superb away win at Barnet, were looking for another victory to move them above a clutch of mid-table clubs, whilst the Sandgrounders, two places below them in 19th place, were hoping to build on a recent win against fellow strugglers Dartford.
Woking had the best of the first half, hitting the woodwork three times through Joe McNerney, Kevin Betsy and John Goddard, but found the Southport rearguard in stubborn form. The visitors’ defiance was eventually broken ten minutes after half-time when Scott Rendell glanced in a fine cross from Josh Payne, controlling the midfield.
Southport nearly equalised with what would have been a wonder goal from John O’Sullivan before Keiran Murtagh, with ten minutes to go, made the game safe as he latched onto a through ball from Betsy and fired home into the far corner.
The win took the Cards into 14th place, only eight points shy of the play-off places.
Woking: Aaron Howe, Adam Newton, John Nutter, Mark Ricketts, Joe McNerney, Kevin Betsy, Josh Payne (Anthony McNamee 83), Keiran Murtagh, John Goddard (Joey Jones 78), Scott Rendell, Jack Marriott (Giuseppe Sole 78)
Unused subs: Sam Beasant, Reece Beckles
Goals: Scott Rendell 55, Keiran Murtagh 80
Southport: Danny Hurst, Aristote Nsiala, David Fitzpatrick, Luke George, John O’Sullivan, Osayamen Osawe (Richard Brodie 84), Matty Flynn (Matty Challinor 17), Karl Ledsham, Scott Brown, Jason Walker, Danny Hattersley (Vincent Mukendi 67)
Unused subs: Charlie Joyce, Alex Wimmer
The Cards are away at Eastleigh on 26 December. (Don’t forget to book your seat on the coach.) Then the Cards take on the Shots in the big local derby at 1pm on Sunday 28 December. Not a game to be missed!
Come on, you Cards!