"Bucks aiming to bounce back from Tuesday's set back"
Match Date : February 10th, 2024 3:00 pm
Competition : Southern League Premier Central
Ground : New Bucks Head
Kick Off : 15:00
AFC Telford take on Kettering Town at the New Bucks Head this weekend.
After narrowly missing out on the National League North playoffs in 2021/22, the Poppies fortunes fell off significantly last season as they were relegated alongside the Bucks.
Former Enfield manager Andy Leese was charged with the task of returning the Poppies back to Step 2, but he was relieved of his duties in November after Ketterings stuttering start to the season. Jim Le Masurier has since taken the reins. But after a promising start under their new man, which included wins over Mickleover and Halesowen, the Poppies have continued to struggle at the wrong end of the table.
Kettering currently sit in 18th place, one place but five points above the drop. And the Poppies’ relegation worries weren’t helped by a 3-1 home defeat to rock bottom Long Eaton last weekend. The Northamptonshire club have the league’s third-worst defence, but they have scored more goals than the Bucks.
Nine of those strikes have come from top scorer Tyrone Lewthwaite, who offers plenty of threat up front. While the Poppies have strengthened their attacking ranks with the arrival of former Buck Kane Richards from Nuneaton. Keeper Dan Jezeph is another who has recently joined Kettering following Nuneaton’s demise, while AFC Telford man George Forsyth, currently on loan at Kettering, will be available for selection for the Poppies.
The Bucks picked up a first win at Kettering since 2009 when Wilkin’s men won 3-1 at Latimer Park on Halloween. Four of the last six games between the two sides have ended in draws though, including both of the last two encounters at the New Bucks Head.
Since impressively overcoming Mickleover at the start of the year, the Bucks have won just one of five games since. And that run, combined with Nuneaton’s collapse, has seen the Bucks fall out of the playoff places. Wilkin’s men will be looking to jump back into the top five as soon as possible, so the Bucks will no doubt be targeting all three points this weekend.