Chorley target crucial win in' monster' derby clash against Southport

Chorley face a ‘monster’ play-off clash against Southport this weekend in the National League North.

By Craig Salmon
Friday, 4th March 2022, 8:00 am
Updated Friday, 11th March 2022, 7:06 am
Connor Hall scores for Chorley against Southport when the two sides met in the FA Cup at Victory Park (photo:Stefan Willoughby)
Connor Hall scores for Chorley against Southport when the two sides met in the FA Cup at Victory Park (photo:Stefan Willoughby)

The fifth-placed Magpies welcome their neighbours to Victory Park tomorrow.

Liam Watson’s men are just a position below Chorley in the table – the two teams separated by goal difference.

Indeed, the Lancashire rivals’ record this season is almost identical with both teams winning 13 and drawing nine games this season – Port having one more defeat to their name having played a game more.

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The result will carry extra importance for Jamie Vermiglio’s men after they were beaten in midweek by Spennymoor Town at home.

The Magpies were arguably the better side against the Moors for a hour and should have found themselves in the lead.

However, the game hinged on a red card shown to home defender Harvey Smith and the visitors made their numerical advantage count by scoring twice in the final third of the encounter.

Vermiglio said his men would not dwell too long on that result as they prepared for the visit of the Sandgrounders.

"I was not too disappointed with the lads on Tuesday night and the endeavour that they have shown,” said Vermiglio, who felt the red card shown to Smith for pulling down Jordan Thewlis was harsh.

"It is always very tough when you’re up against 11 men and you’ve only got 10 men.

"Credit to the lads with the endeavour and the attitude but obviously disappointed with the result.

"But we will roll our sleeves up and get ourselves ready for what will be a monster game on Saturday against Southport.

"The games comes around quick and we won’t dwell too much on the result on Tuesday.”

Despite having a number of injury worries ahead of the game, Vermiglio believes his men will determined to put one over on Port who have been a tough nut for the Magpies to crack this season.

They have already met three times and Chorley have yet to register a victory.

In the FA Cup, they exited at the first stage of the competition after the Sandgrounders won a replay at Haig Avenue 1-0 following a 2-2 draw at Victory Park.

The two teams played out a 0-0 draw in the first league meeting in early November.

"I think our lads will be heartened by the fact that we owe them one,” said Vermiglio, who took charge of his 150th games as chorley manager against the Moors.

"They are up there – they are a good, good team.

"They can be a very direct team at times, but they can also play and can shift the ball well, so we will need to be ready because it’s going to be a tough game.

"Liam Watson has them well drilled but I fancy us against anyone at home.”

Elsewhere, fourth-placed AFC Fylde Kidderminster Harriers, who are third, this weekend.