Preview: Harriers v Bath City
Steve Burr has the tricky job of keeping his players' minds focussed on playing a game and away from the events off the pitch as Bath city visit Aggborough this afternoon.
With the proposed takeover of the club by Chris Swan having collapsed, with no other alternatives looking likely at the moment, and none of the staff and players having been paid Burr has to keep working miracles with his team to ensure they continue to turn in the performances that have been getting results. A bumbper crowd is hoped for this afternoon to raise some much-needed cash for the troubled club, all those folks who turn up every time there's a trip to Wembley or a big FA Cup tie claiming to be Harriers fans need to turn up today.
Burr will be without Lee Morris again who is still recovering from a thigh strain while Matt Blair and Dave Hankin who both picked up injuries in the win at Hayes & Yeading last weekend are both doubtful and will be assessed as late as possible. Lee Vaughan is also a doubt after tweaking his hamstring in the friendly win at Port Vale in midweek. If none of those players are fit enough to take part Burr's options will be stretched to the limit with just 14 fit players to choose from.
Bath are having a decent season on their return to the top level of the Conference currently sitting in 12th place on the back of an excellent 4-0 win over Cambridge United and 2-2 draw with Wimbledon in their last two games. City have, in fact, lost just one of their last five games and also have recently draw with Luton and beaten Newport. They will be without Danny Webb who has a fractured cheekbone but Joe Burnell should be OK to play while Jon Brown could come in attack for his debut.
Earlier this season a very poor Harriers performance helped City to come out on top in the game at Twerton Park, The Romans eventually winnign 2-0. Overall, though, Harriers have the best of previous meetings, winning 24 and losing 20 of 56 post-war meetings. At Aggborough Harriers have won 15 and lost 6 of 28 games.
I expect Harriers to line-up as follows (4-4-2): Lewis; Vaughan, Williams, Briscoe, Albrighton; Wright, Briggs, Byrne, Gittings; McPhee, Matt.
Subs (from): Shaw, Hankin, Griffiths, Sharpe, Blair, Thompson-Brown, Stevens.
Missing (injured): Morris, Thorne.
This afternoon's referee will be Andy Bennett from Devon. This will be the sixth time he has been in charge of a Harriers game, and the second time this season. Earlier this season he was the referee for the disappointing defeat at Newport while previously he took charge of one Harriers win, two draws and a defeat.
The weather in Kidderminster, currently overcast and windy, is forecast to be wet at kick-off time with light rain and a temperature of 11°C.