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 Post subject: BILLINGHAM TOWN v THORNABY PREVIEW
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 5:25 pm 
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BILLINGHAM TOWN v THORNABY PREVIEW
Saturday 11th March, Bedford Terrace, 3:00pm k.o

On Saturday afternoon, Town are back at the home of football against Thornaby in what could be termed as Judgement Day! And the first thing they need to do, is turn Bedford Terrace into a fortress again. Since the turn of the year, Town have lost to Cleethorpes, Stockton & Ryton at home and another derby defeat could curtail any chance of promotion. On the flip side, Town are capable of going on another run, in the knowledge that Team Northumbria still have to come here and they also have Stockton & Synthonia to play! First of all, Town need to collect all three points and some followers of the Northern League may say the jury is still out on Billingham! The home support will think differently!

THE OPPOSITION:
Thornaby manager Paul Burton has steadied the ship somewhat after a disastrous Autumn campaign that saw the club in free fall. Victories, such as a 2.1 win at Blyth Town seem like a distant memory now but circumstances were different then. Burton picked up the pieces after Paul Edward's departure and the priority was to keep Thornaby's Northern League status intact. Good home wins against Durham City and Whickham, plus picking up draws on the road against teams around them in the table have contributed to achieving that aim. Thornaby still have plenty of games in hand but the majority of them are away from home and they haven't won another game on their travels since that Blyth Town fixture, back in August! There were positive signs in the recent 2.0 defeat at Synthonia and they came from 3.1 down to draw 3.3 at Northallerton two weeks back. Squad wise they have a couple of old heads in Danny Brunskill and Karl Charlton and Lewis Green ended a brief spell with Town by crossing the river Tees while Aaron Foley went the opposite direction. Striker, Gary Mitchell is another vastly experienced player and Nathan Evans has returned to Teesdale Park from Team Northumbria. Sixteen year old winger Kurtis Howes has impressed observers and could be the danger man; Howes scored one of the goals in the 3.6 home defeat to Easington and against Synthonia in the EA Memorial Cup.

ONE TO WATCH: DANNY BRUNSKILL
Now at the veteran stage of his career, Brunskill has done the rounds within the Northern League and will be best remembered for his spells at Marske United. Began this season at Billingham Synthonia but had Conor Winter and Nathan Steel ahead of him. Joined Thornaby in the new year and is still a goal threat, particularly in the air (two headed goals against Northallerton). Yet another ex Town striker to face his former club!

RECENT RESULTS/AWAY FORM/HEAD TO HEAD:
Thornaby 0-1 Darlington R.A
Northallerton 3-3 Thornaby (Brunskill 2, Mitchell)
Billingham Synthonia 2-0 Thornaby
Hebburn 2-1 Thornaby (Rowe)
Crook 3-0 Thornaby
Thornaby 3-6 Easington (Charlton, Rowe, Howes)

WLWLLDLLdLLLD W2 D3 L8 F17 A31 League Position 17th Form Table 20th

Last Season: Thornaby 2-1 Billingham Town Billingham Town 2-1 Thornaby
This Season: Thornaby 0-5 Billingham Town

SQUAD NEWS:
Mark Dixon sits out his second game of a three match ban and will be available from Heaton Stannington onwards (first of three home games in a row). Midfielder, Aaron Foley is on the road to recovery but will need time before he returns to first team action and could join up with the reserves which also applies to Danny Maloney. Keeper, Alex Leeds will make his home debut after two displays at Northallerton and Stockton respectively. Danny Rowbotham is unlikely to figure again this season due to work commitments but Matty Osmond is available.

SQUAD FROM: (subject to change)
Leeds, Moore, Osmond, Redman, Crossen, Oakley, Ridley, Connor, Davis, Macdonald, Lavan, Keogh, Dunlavey, Hogan, Beddow, Dickinson, Hutchinson.

POPPS POINTERS:
Our blip in form has come at a bad time, especially as it's the run in now and we need to get back to our free flowing football. We need to win mainly every game realistically if we want to be promoted but at the same time I think that the other three main contenders will also slip up so we need to be ready for their blip and jump in to the top 3 as and when possible. Thornaby will not be an easy game for us if we don't play the way we are used to. They will battle till the end and want to get revenge for the early season demolition of them at their ground but as normal we have earmarked this as a 3 point game and nothing less will do to get us back on track and to get the confidence back. UTT!!

WEATHER: Sunny Intervals 12C


Graham Hutchinson
Press Officer

Sent from my iPad

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