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PREVIEW: Gladiators travel to Basford for first away trip of season

Updated: Aug 19, 2019


Photo Credit: Nottingham Post

Matlock Town head to Greenwich Avenue on Monday night to take on well-fancied Basford United in their first away game of the season.


Like Basford, the Gladiators will be looking to make it two wins from their first two games with a win in Nottingham.

 

The Opposition


The Nottingham outfit finished 7th last season in the Northern Premier Division which was an impressive achievement considering this was their first season back in the seventh tier after winning promotion the previous season.


They’re managed by Steve Chettle who some of you may well remember from his Premier League playing days for Nottingham Forest. Chettle also made 12 appearances for England U21s. Steve’s son, Callum, plays for Basford United as a midfielder and also has some international experience with one cap for the England C team. Callum Chettle also had a brief loan spell at Matlock Town last season.


Basford beat Hyde United 3-2 away from home last Saturday in their first game of the season and are tipped by many to be in with a real chance of promotion this season. A win for Matlock at Greenwich Avenue would be a big statement for the Gladiators season ahead.

 

One to Watch


Liam Hearn could well be the one to watch for Matlock’s first away day of the season. Hearn scored four goals in the first half in Basford’s final day 7-3 victory over Nantwich Town last season.


Hearn scored 75 goals in 128 league appearances over the course of two playing spells at Alfreton Town. Hearn joined Basford United from Alfreton Town in 2017 and was part of the team that won the NPL Division One South title in the 2017-18 season as well as winning the league’s player of the year and golden boot in that same season.


Hearn also won Grimsby Town’s player of the year award in the 2011-12 season where he helped Grimsby secure promotion back to the Football League. He also has one England C cap to his name.

 

Team News


Steve Kittrick mentioned in my interview with him after the game against Bamber Bridge that there may have to be a little bit of rotation with the squad due to the very short space of time between the opening two games of this season.


Jon Stewart appeared to be a doubt for Monday night’s game due to the nasty gash he sustained right at the end of Saturday’s match but Matlock Town’s tweet earlier today indicates that Stewart will be ready to go for kick-off.

 

Previous Meeting


Matlock and Basford’s last meeting was back on April 2nd where the Gladiators staged a late comeback to draw 2-2 at the Proctor Cars Stadium. Basford were leading 2-0 thanks to goals from Lewis Carr and Nathan Watson.


Craig Westcarr got a goal back from the penalty spot in the 79th minute. This was followed by a sensational long-range goal from Michael Williams in the 82nd minute to secure the draw.

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