Hall Road Rangers will be very determined to pick up a crucial 3 points as they visit rock bottom Clipstone on Saturday in a massive NCEL Premier Division match. The Cobras have 1 solitary point from the 32 games they have played so far this season so it leaves Rangers with a very good chance of getting a victory that could be a catalyst for them getting out of relegation trouble.
Prior to the midweek postponement against Hemsworth Miners Welfare, Hall Road boss Bill Gill was in a very positive mood as he issued a rallying call to his players. Gill said:
We only have one thing in mind now for the remainder of the season and that is to perform the best we can and gain maximum points from all our remaining fixtures. We have a group of players that can beat any team on the day and it is a false position that we are in. Wherever we are placed in the league our mindset remains the same and that is to win every football game.
Clipstone’s home form has been terrible this season with 17 defeats in the 17 games they have played on home soil and Hall Road will want to make sure that it becomes 18 defeats after this Saturday’s game. The confidence in the Clipstone camp will be very low after 7 straight defeats in the league and the latest of those was a 10-3 defeat at home to Maltby Main on Tuesday night. Blessing Adeleye scored twice for The Cobras and Thomas Gledhill got the other goal.
Rangers were victorious in the previous meeting between these sides back in October as they won 3-2 at Haworth Park. They were 3-0 up at half time thanks to a Danny Norton strike and a Danny Chambers brace. However, Clipstone nearly pulled off a remarkable comeback as they scored twice in the second half with those goals coming from Tim Gregory and Matthew Hubbard. The Cobras deserved credit on that day as they didn’t give up the fight and gave Hall Road quite the scare but it should be a completely different story on Saturday.
This is the perfect opportunity for Hall Road to pick up 3 points which would be a huge boost to their chances of staying in the NCEL Premier Division. They still have plenty of games in hand on those sides above them and they will undoubtedly feel they are more than capable of catching Harrogate Railway Athletic who sit just outside the relegation zone. Rangers are 5 points adrift of them but Harrogate Railway are in poor form and they have lost both of their games against Hall Road this season. Hall Road will have to be fully focused on getting the job done to avoid any embarrassment and if they were to get the win then it would provide the perfect springboard for everybody associated with the club for the rest of the season.
Gill also admitted that his players have been working hard in training ahead of this game as they look to get the win on Saturday. Gill concluded:
We have been working in training this week to try to keep the momentum up after the positive performance we put in at Pontefract Collieries.
Match Preview by Oliver Harsley