"AFC Telford take on table toppers Mickleover on Tuesday"
Match Date : September 12th, 2023 7:45 pm
Competition : Southern League Central
Ground : New Bucks Head
Kick Off : 19:45
AFC Telford take on league leaders Mickleover in a big game under the lights on Tuesday night.
To say the Sports have made an impressive start to the season would be an understatement. The Derbyshire club are still in the FA Cup, have won seven out of seven in the league and have both the division’s best defence (3 goals conceded) and its best attack (23 goals scored – seven more than the next best sides).
Mickleover also have the league’s top scorer in eight-goal Marcus Barnes. The younger brother of former Derby and West Brom man Giles Barnes, Marcus has caught the eye since his summer move from Northern Colorado Hailstorm. And, unsurprisingly, the Sports’ squad contains lots of other threats too. Veteran Stuart Beavon spent 11 seasons in the Football League, while young midfielder Oliver Greaves has six goals in all competitions. Last season’s top scorer, Andy Dales, is another man to watch.
The Derbyshire side also feature two former Bucks in the shape of Andre Wright and Ryan Wilson. And the latter, who played for the Bucks during Rob Edwards’ tenure, is the current Sports captain.
The man in charge at the Don Amott Arena is former Burton Albion midfielder John McGrath. McGrath was named Mickleover manager in April 2016 when Sports were in the Northern Premier League, and it’s safe to say the switch to the Southern Premier League Central has been to Mickleover’s benefit. Sports regularly finished in mid-table prior to their switch, but having been transferred ahead of last season’s campaign, McGrath’s side only narrowly missed out on the playoffs as they finished one point outside the top five in 6th. And with Sports off to a flyer this season, they look like to be well and truly in the promotion picture again this season.
After Saturday’s win at St Ives, Kevin Wilkin’s men are within striking distance of the playoff places and will want to jump up into the top five as soon as possible. And while Mickleover have clearly started the campaign with a bang, four of their seven league outings have been against sides in the current bottom six. So, Tuesday will be a good test for both sides, and the Bucks will be aiming to become the first side to beat Sports this season.
Tickets for Tuesday’s fixture will remain on sale up until kick-off and are available for purchase online.