Peterborough Sports (23/03/2024) – PREVIEW/SUPPORTER INFO

Following back to back wins that have lifted Blyth 8 points above the drop zone and on the verge of safety, Jon Shaw’s side will be looking to secure a third win on the bounce and match our longest winning run of the season. As for Peterborough Sports, they’ve had a dip of form of late and still have to face us, Gloucester, King’s Lynn and Farsley Celtic (twice) – so they have every chance of getting sucked into real fight to beat the drop.

The Opposition

Despite their poor form, Sports have plenty of players capable of causing us issues – though some of them appear to have been either injured or out form recently. A notable player who featured for Darlington in recent years was Jordan Nicholson, who’s been injured and missed large spells of the season. The winger has 4 goals in 18 games this season, but he appears to be injured at the moment. Kane Felix who moved from Darlington earlier in the season has not hit the ground running for Sports, with only 1 goal in his 24 league games.

Midfielder Josh McCammon is currently the club’s top scorer with 6 league goals in 37 games. He’s a very quick player who’s skilful and can out do just about any full back at this level of football – though he can play just about anywhere in an attacking midfield role and cause problems. Dan Jarvis has also been decent for them this season, chipping in with 5 goals. Operating in more of a central role, Jarvis is a playmaker who will be able to cause us real problems – unless we let Jordan Hickey off the lead.

At Croft Park earlier in the season Peterborough operated with a back 5, with the main threat coming from RWB Matt Tootle, however he seems to have been in and out of late due to injury (I’m guessing). Lincoln City’s Elicha Ahui seems to be filling in for him at the moment.

Goalkeeper Peter Crook will be difficult to beat, as he’s probably one of the best all round keepers in that area. Centre back Ashton Fox will likely be a threat at set pieces and difficult to get around. He’s rather pacey, very tall and can hoy a canny tackle in.

Blyth Team News

No news yet on Michael Liddle‘s injury status ahead of Saturday just yet, though with the way he went down on Tuesday I’d expect he won’t feature. Oli Thompson may be ready to return to action, but he might not be ready to play 90 min’s just yet. JJ O’Donnell will of course be out, and I’d suspect Harry Arnison will also be missing as he has been in recent weeks. Joe Oliver may also be unavailable for this one.

Zanda Siziba‘s initial loan spell has ended and York City look to have plans for him the first team. As Blyth seem to love a Friday signing, Jon Shaw might have something cooking. But as we’ve not long brought Luke James and Reeve in, we may not have the resources to strengthen further.

Shaw and Dickman will have a selection headache on their hands ahead of tomorrow if Michael Liddle is out. Sticking with the 4-5-1 that’s secured wins in our last 2 games, or switch to a back 5 with a makeshift LWB will be a difficult call to make – and that’s before we factor in replacing Ziziba in the line up.

Rhys Evans did well at LB on Tuesday night, but if Oli Thompson is fit he could be deployed as a LWB if he moves to a back 5. Jack Bodenham has been shifted over to LB a few times this season, though personally I much prefer him at CB.

Fan Info

A quick look at train prices fills me with dread. £130 to Peterborough and back is an absolute fucking disgrace. Mind if you’ve got coin, have at it.

If you’re getting the train down, there is a pub across the road from the train station called the Great Northern Hotel. Avoid at all costs, as it’s shit. If you can, head round to the Brewery Tap around the corner, as that is canny and actually clean.

Right next the ground is a pub called The Crown, which looks okay from the outside but it’s actually rough as tits. It makes the average pub in Cowpen look like Harrogate. Avoid the scran at all costs as well you do venture in…

The ground itself isn’t exactly my favourite, and it’s rather easy to miss. A lot of the locals in Peterborough town centre didn’t actually know where the ground was last year , so you’ll struggle for directions if you get lost. Basically, if you turn down a road to a GP’s with a car park with what looks like a garden centre right to next to it, you’ve landed.

As it’s non-league day, the hosts discounted tickets on sale. I can’t find a link to buy them online though.

Adults £10
Under 13£0

Ref Watch

Merseyside’s Callum Jones in charge of this one. He’s only been in charge of 3 NLN games all seasons, all coming in February and March this year. He dished out 11 yellow cards in those games, 1 red and a penalty. He appears to have been selected to be part of the Premier League’s young referee development team, whatever the fuck that is.

Betting Preview

The hosts are heavy favourites for this one for some reason. Give our recent turn around and their downward spiral, logic would say Blyth should be favourites. Then again, the bookies have always backed the loser in recent weeks – proving how little they know about non league football.

Despite losing Siziba, I still think we’re good for a 3-1 victory.