Preview: Harriers v Stockport County
Fourth plays fifth this evening when Harriers entertain Stockport County in a massive National League North encounter.
A Harriers victory would see them really strengthen their grip on fourth place, moving them four points clear of County and potentially ten points clear of the team in eighth place.
Lee Vaughan will miss out again tonight, this being the second of his three-game ban. Dan Bradley missed the game on Saturday at Blyth with a knee problem, with six goals in his last five game his presence was missed and he should come straight back into the side if he's fit this evening. James McQuilkin had to be substituted early in the second half at Croft Park, if he is unavailable Elton Ngwatala could come in in his place with Manny Sonupé returning to the starting line-up in attack.
Stockport come to Aggborough in great form having won the last six games, scoring 17 goals in the process, and eight of their last ten. Most of those wins, though, have come against teams lower down the table; in games played by the current top eight against each other The Hatters have the worst record, including all five games played away so far.
The sides have already met three time this season; at Edgeley Park in the league Joe Ironside scored twice as Harriers came from behind to win 2-1. There was a 2-2 draw at Aggborough in the FA Trophy, Fraser Horsfall and Manny Sonupé with the goals with County taking the replay 3-0. Overall Harriers lead four wins to three from the nine games played and Stockport have yet to win at Aggborough.
I expect Harriers to line-up as follows (4-3-3): Hall; Pearson, Austin, O'Connor, Horsfall; Weeks, Croasdale, McQuilkin; Sonupé, Ironside, Ngwatala.
Subs (from): Brown, Digie, Palmer, Truslove, N. Vaughan, Waring.
Missing (injured): Bradley, Taylor.
Missing (suspended): L. Vaughan.
Missing (dual-reg):Finch, Webb.
The referee this evening will be Amy Fearn from Leicestershire, This will be her second Harriers game of the season, having done the recent defeat by Harrogate, and 15th game in total. The previous 14 have seen Harriers win five and draw three.
This evening's weather is forecast to be cloudy with a kick-off time temperature of 12°C and no chance of rain.