Match Preview: Lancaster City vs South Shields, BetVictor Northern Premier Division
The BetVictor Northern Premier Division’s top two go head-to-head on Saturday in a much-anticipated clash at Giant Axe.
South Shields travel to Lancaster City looking to avenge their 1-0 home loss to the Dolly Blues in November and know that a win would move them six points clear at the top.
The Mariners will remain at the summit unless Lancaster inflict at least a four-goal defeat on them at Giant Axe but they head to Lancashire aiming to put more daylight between themselves and the chasing pack.
Joint manager Graham Fenton said: “Everyone involved in football looks forward to these top-of-the-table games.
“To hold these league positions at this stage of the season shows both teams have been doing very well.
“It’s an added incentive for us that Lancaster came to Mariners and took all three points, so we’ll be looking to get one back on them this time.
“We go into the game in really good spirits and are looking to maintain our winning league form in 2020.”
Shields are expected to be backed by a strong travelling support as they bid to maintain their 100% start to 2020.
Their last outing saw them beat Mickleover Sports 5-2 in an entertaining match at Mariners Park last Saturday, with Tuesday’s Integro Cup trip to Dunston having been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.
Fenton knows Lancaster will make life difficult for his side on Saturday, but insists Shields are relishing the test.
He added: “I’m sure it will be a tough game in testing conditions but as always our lads are really looking forward to the challenge and hopefully we can come out with a positive result.
“We have no fresh injury worries from last week so we will have a few selection issues in terms of the team and the squad, which is fantastic to have at this stage of the season.
“Lancaster have a particularly good home record and we know it’s going to be tough.
“We’re not going to be given anything so we’ll have to earn everything we get, but hopefully we can come out on top.”
Shields will remain without the injured Luke Daly (knee) and Ross Coombe (finger) ahead of Saturday’s 3pm kick-off at Giant Axe, which has a post code of LA1 5PE.
Admission prices are £10 for adults, £7 for students and concessions, £5 for those aged 14 to 17 and free for under-14s accompanied by an adult.