Preview: Newport County v Harriers
August 28, 2010

Preview: Newport County v Harriers

Harriers head back over the border into Wales again this afternoon, this time heading to the other end of the country to face Newport County.

Steve Burr is set to make changes to the team that came from two goals down at Wrexham in midweek to earn a point as Lee Vaughan is finally available to make his debut after sitting out the first four games of the season through suspension. He should come in at right back with Tom Shaw moving into midfield to partner Keith Briggs. Jack Byrne may be forced to miss out, but with Callum Gittings nursing a shin injury he could move out onto the wing to take his place. Marc Williams is available again after being prevented from playing against his parent club, but as he will miss the next two games while being away on international duty with Wales Under-21s he may not be able to force his way into the starting line-up to dislodge either Lee Morris or Nick Wright who performed so well at The Racecourse on Tuesday.

Newport will have half a team playing at the top of their games looking to get one over on a former club as Darryl Knights, Robbie Matthews, Lee Baker, Paul Bignot, Sam Foley and Craig Reid are all on the books of the Conference newcomers. Baker is unlikely to feature as he has an ankle injury and is yet to make his debut, and Knights has yet to start a game since his summer move.

This will be the first meeting of the clubs since Newport reformed, but against the original club Harriers had the better of the encounters. The last game played by Newport before they became defunct was a Clubcall Cup tie against Harriers at Somerton Park which Harriers came out on top of, winning 6-5 after extra-time. In the Conference Harriers won in Newport and drew at Aggborough in the two games played that same season. Overall Harriers have won six games to two from 12 previous meetings.

I expect Harriers to line-up as follows (4-4-2): Lewis; Vaughan, Briscoe, Sharpe, Mike Williams; Hankin, Briggs, Shaw, Byrne; Wright, Morris.
Subs (from): Albrighton, McPhee, Griffiths, Blair, Hadley, Verma, Marc Williams, Stevens.
Missing (injured): Finnigan, Gittings.

The referee this afternoon is Andy Bennett from Devon. This will be his fifth Harriers game, last season he was in the middle for the 1-1 draw at Forest Green. In previous seasons he oversaw one Harriers win, one defeat and one draw.

The weather this afternoon is forecast to be mostly sunny in South Wales with a temperature of 18C.

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