Blues looking forward to facing strugglers

Whitby's Anthony Callaghan gets in a challenge at Shildon'picture: Brian Murfield
Whitby's Anthony Callaghan gets in a challenge at Shildon'picture: Brian Murfield

Whitby Town travel to rural Derbyshire tomorrow to face strugglers Matlock Town.

Mark Atkins’ men have just one win in nine, following on from a barren run at the tail end of last season.

They trail 18th-placed Whitby by four places and two points after a 3-1 defeat at Nantwich Town last weekend.

The Gladiators have signed North Ferriby forward Jamie Yates on loan, as they contend with a number of injuries all over the pitch.

The Blues are close to full strength with midfielder Dale Hopson shrugging off his foot injury to come on late in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Marine.

Striker Zak Boagey has had a month of football at Northern League First Division Newton Aycliffe, as he continues his recovery from an ankle knock, while left-back Anth Callaghan has gone to Northern League Two Washington to try to get back to full fitness.

Player-boss Darren Williams told the Whitby Gazette: “We’re looking forward to the weekend game after our display at home.

“We are growing in confidence and are more together as a team.”

Williams’ side are six unbeaten in the Evo-Stik NPL Premier and could go into the top half with victory at the Autoworld Arena.

Traditionally, the Seasiders have struggled at Matlock, they picked up their one and only win there two days before securing their Premier Division status up the road in Buxton, during the great escape season of 2011-12.

The corresponding contest, last April, saw the hosts win 2-0 in a bad-tempered affair as Dave McTiernan, Steven Snaith and Matlock’s Cecil Nyoni were all red-carded.

That reversal ended a run of five games without defeat for Whitby against the former FA Trophy winners, who were put to the sword 1-0 on their last visit to the Turnbull.

A supporters’ coach leaves the Turnbull Ground at 9.30am. Seats are £10 with admission at the Midlands club set at £9 adults, doncessions: £5.50 and children under 15 admitted for £2, when accompanied by a paying adult.

The Blues are back at home on Wednesday when Grantham Town visit the Turnbull Ground.

The sides contested a physical 1-1 draw last November that saw McTiernan dismissed for an apparent headbutt near the Turnbull touchline.

The Lincolnshire outfit, placed 15th, have suffered back-to-back defeats, with FC United of Manchester seeing them off 3-1 at Stalybridge’s Bower Fold, last Saturday and Rushall Olympic doing the business, 1-0, four days earlier.

Admission at the Turnbull Ground on Wednesday is £9 adults, £5 concessions, £2 for under 18s and under 16s get in free with a paying adult.

Kick-off is 7.45pm.