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MATCH PREVIEW | Nuneaton v Chorley

The Magpies (9th, 44pts) head to Warwickshire on Saturday for their Vanarama National League North encounter with a galvanised Nuneaton Town (12th, 39pts), writes Alex Birch.

Sitting four points back of the playoffs with 12 games remainingMatt Jansen’s men remain locked in a battle to secure their third post-season berth in four years.

A tricky opponent awaits at Liberty Way, however, as five wins in six games have propelled ‘The Boro’ away from the drop zone, with Dino Maamria’s charges now firmly entrenched in mid-table.

Team news

Matt Jansen has a fully-fit squad to choose from, with Jake Cottrell back in contention after missing Saturday’s victory over Gainsborough through illness.

Quotes

“All games at this level are difficult, but I believe we can go the rest of the season unbeaten. We’re more than good enough to do that” – Matt Jansen speaking to Harry Lyons

Last meeting

The Magpies came from two down to salvage a draw under the lights in a pulsating game back in November. Josh Wilson and Matty Hughes were Chorley’s scorers, cancelling out earlier goals by Jordan Nicholson and Ashley Chambers, in front of 1,306 fans.

Previous campaigns

08/08/15 NLN Chorley 2 Nuneaton 3 (CarverHine; Maguire, Williams, Morgan)

19/12/15 NLN Nuneaton 2 Chorley 2 (Williams 2; TeagueStephenson)

05/11/16 NLN Chorley 1 Nuneaton 0 (Carver)

08/04/17 NLN Nuneaton 1 Chorley 1 (Chambers; Whitham)

Stats

Blank: Saturday’s clean sheet against Gainsborough was the Magpies’ fourteenth in the league this season, and sixteenth overall.

495 minutes: In what is their best defensive streak since August 2015 (344 minutes), Nuneaton haven’t conceded a goal since Harrogate’s Terry Kennedy beat Dean Lyness on January 9.

Away days: Chorley have gained points in nine away league games, conceding just three goals in the process.

Home comfort: Since Dino Maamria took charge at the end of October, Nuneaton have lost only two of seven home league matches (3W/2D)

Match day (24/02/18)

Kick off at Liberty Way (CV11 6RR) is 3pm

Admission is on the gate: £14 adults, £12 over-65s, £3 youngsters 16-and-under, FREE accompanied children 10-and-under, while main stand transfers cost an extra £2

Programmes are £2.50

Parking at the ground is £2 cars, £5 minibuses & £10 coaches

Can’t make the game? We’ve got you covered. Our live match coverage from Liberty Way will be available on Twitter (@chorleyfc) and Facebook from 2.15pm, with Harry Lyons guiding you through the afternoon’s events. Oran Willis’ match report will be available on this very website straight after the final whistle, followed by Josh Vosper’s interview with Matt Jansen.

Come on you Magpies!

MAGPIES SAY A FOND FARWELL TO TOM SMYTH

We would like to pass on our best wishes to Tom Smyth who has been released by the club.

Tom, who arrived at Chorley from Colwyn Bay in the summer of 2014, looked to be forming a formidable partnership with captain Andy Teague last season until injuries began to blight his season.  In a bid to build up his fitness this season he has played for both Ashton United and Trafford, while still registered with Chorley, but has now moved on to find regular football.

Talking about the news he said: “I’m gutted to be leaving the club but I need game time. Injuries obviously haven’t helped me, but I’d like to give a big thanks to everyone for their love and support. I’d like to wish the club all the very best of luck this season and hopefully go one better than last season. Victory Park is a great place with great people behind it.”

In other news, fellow defender Adam Dodd has signed dual registration forms with local rivals Bamber Bridge. Adam joined the club at the same time as Tom and has also suffered from injuries. He is now back to full fitness but has joined Brig to regain much needed match sharpness.

Striker Marcus Carver and defender Chris Doyle have returned to their parent clubs, Accrington Stanley and Morecambe respectively. Due to loan rules, it means neither cannot return to the club until the January transfer window opens. Manager Matt Jansen said: “Marcus has been great for us and I’m sure we’ll see him again in the distant future while everyone knows what Chris is capable of and he's been immense whenever he has played for either myself of Garry."

 

Marcus Carver and Chris Doyle

Magpie In The Spotlight ...

CENTRAL DEFENDER  /  Left Back

A left sided central defender who can also play at left back and is based in Euxton.

Started his career in the same Wigan Athletic youth side as Leighton Baines but failed to break into the Latics’ first team.

A loan spell at Southport was followed by a permanent move to Northwich Victoria, where his performance were rewarded with 11 England C caps and a move to Peterborough United.

Injuries hindered his progress at the Posh and loan spell at Accrington Stanley was followed by a permanent move to Torquay United where he stayed for two seasons.  Over the last five seasons he has had spells at Morecambe, Fleetwood Town, Macclesfield Town, Stockport County and last season he made 37 appearances for Chester in the Vanarama Conference.

FOMER CLUBS: Wigan Athletic, Southport, Northwich Victoria, Peterborough United, Accrington Stanley, Torquay United, Morecambe, Fleetwood Town, Macclesfield Town, Stockport County, Chester

England C:  11 caps, 1 goal

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