THE PREVIEW | MTFC Vs Radcliffe FC - Pitching In NPL - 29.3.22
Matlock Town host Radcliffe on Tuesday evening in the Northern Premier League Premier Division as we enter the home straight of an enthralling 2021/22 season.
With only one win in their last ten games, the Gladiators are desperate for a win of any kind to strengthen their position in the top five and to keep in contention with Buxton and South Shields who are first and second respectively in the league.
Radcliffe currently lie third from bottom in 20th place in the Northern Premier League Premier Division and aren't out of relegation trouble. They've lost five of their last six games and have lost their last three games in a row. In their most recent match, Radcliffe were beaten 2-0 at home by promotion contenders Warrington Town. In their most recent away trip, they lost 3-0 at Buxton.
Radcliffe were founded in 1949 and are nicknamed The Boro. They play their home games at the Neuven Stadium which can allow up to 3,500 spectators and has a seated capacity of 350.
Their player-manager is striker Bobby Grant. Grant took over the reins at the club following Lee Fowler's resignation in October of this season. The 31 year-old has played for the likes of Accrington Stanley, Scunthorpe United, Fleetwood Town and Wrexham. He's had an excellent season on the pitch scoring 16 league goals so far in the 2021/22 campaign.
Two time European Cup winner Alan Kennedy, former England international Frank Worthington and current West Ham United defender Craig Dawson have all featured for Radcliffe at some point in their careers.
One to Watch
22 year-old midfielder Luca Navarro will be a key player to look out for on Tuesday evening. Navarro can play in central midfield as well as out on the wing and has an eye for goal.
Navarro scored earlier this month in Radcliffe's most recent victory when they defeated Basford United 3-0 at home in the league.
Skipper Liam Hughes is available for selection again following his two match suspension.
The Gladiators go into this game with a few injury doubts. Alex Wiles is unlikely to feature due to his ankle injury while striker Reece Webb-Foster has recently had a scan regarding his injury. Liam King is a doubt while Osebi Abadaki may not be fully fit due to the painful injury which forced his substitution in last weekend's draw at Scarborough Athletic.
Recent signing Adam Blakeley could make his Gladiators debut.
These two sides last played each other at The Neuven Stadium in September earlier this season in the league.
Matlock Town won 1-0 thanks to an early goal from Jamie Cooke in front of a crowd of 274.