MATCH PREVIEW: Saturday 10 August 2019, 3pm, BetVictor Southern League Central Premier Division, Stratford Town v Needham Market, Arden Garages Stadium. By Drew Kendall
Tomorrow Needham Market visit Stratford Town at the Arden Garages Stadium for the start of the new 2019/20 BetVictor Southern League Central Premier Division.
Last season honours were even between these two teams, as the first meeting took place at Bloomfields on November 17th 2018, as the Marketmen took a 2-1 victory, Gareth Heat’s pow stroke into the bottom corner on 22 minutes followed by Luke Ingram’s low strike into the unguarded bottom corner to make it 2-0 on 40 minutes. With 6 minutes remaining however, Morrison made things interesting, as his low free-kick found the bottom far corner to pull a goal back for Stratford, though Needham held on for victory.
The return fixture then took place at Arden Garages Stadium on 19th January 2019, as the home side avenged the away defeat, beating the Suffolk side 3-1. Nabil Shariff opening the scoring on 39 minutes, as Needham keeper Jessup gave the ball straight to the Stratford man who found the bottom left corner. Jordan Williams then doubled Stratford’s lead on the stroke of the interval, bundling a corner on the right over the line from close range at the far post. Eleven minutes into the second half, Shariff picked up a brace, Carvalhos' cross in finding the striker in acres of space at the back post, who had the easy task of nodding into the bottom right corner to pick up his second goal of the afternoon for 3-0 Stratford. Needham though got a consolation goal on 79 minutes, as Joe Marsden’s spot-kick sent the keeper the wrong way as the Reds’ top scorer found the bottom right corner for 3-1.
In terms of how the two teams fared last season, Stratford finished fifth in the play-off places, having won 13, drawn 2 and lost 6 of their 21 league home games- whilst Needham finished eleventh, winning nine, drawing 3 and losing nine on the road last season.
League Top Scorers:
Stratford:- Wilson Carvalho (10)
Needham Market:- Joe Marsden (18)
Gate Admission Prices-
Over 65's £8
Full Time students £5
Under 18's £2
Under 12's Free