Testing month awaits struggling Hoppers

Preston Grasshoppers’ first home game in a month kicks off a hugely testing four-week run up to the Christmas break.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

In that spell, they face three of the top five clubs in National League Two North – Hull Ionians, Rotherham Titans and Fylde – plus a trip to Blaydon, who are only three points behind them, in 12th place.

In tomorrow’s visit of the third-placed Humbersiders, Hoppers will be biding to end a four-match losing streak and record only their third victory of the campaign.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Ionians have won eight games, losing only to the top two, Sedgley Park and Fylde, and have won their last five in a row.

Preston Grasshoppers have lost four games on the bounce - one of which was against Chester (photo: Mike Craig)Preston Grasshoppers have lost four games on the bounce - one of which was against Chester (photo: Mike Craig)
Preston Grasshoppers have lost four games on the bounce - one of which was against Chester (photo: Mike Craig)

Ken Brown returns at full-back for Hoppers and Ed Keohane is at fly-half. In the pack, Chris Taylor hooks and Josh Longson is in the back row with Will Riley and Scott Richardson.

Meanwhile, second-placed Fylde travel to Sheffield, who are ninth after four victories and six defeats. They are on a three-game losing run.

Fylde have nine wins out of 10. The clubs haven’t met for 25 years, before the advent of league rugby.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

In Regional Two North West, Vale of Lune are away to leaders Anselmians, who have lost just one game out of 10, against Firwood Waterloo four weeks ago.

Vale are seventh, with four victories and six defeats, and will find it tough to avoid three losses in a row.

After the defeat by Altrincham Kersal a fortnight ago, Vale make a number of changes, especially in the pack, including Owen Branford at hooker, Joe Harrison at lock, Alfie Bolton, Joe Wallbank and Andy Powers in the back row and Jonny Silverwood at fly-half.

Hoppers: Hoppers: Brown; Spence, Browne, Swarbrick, Clapham; Keohane, Moulding; Mabaya, Taylor, Trippier, Murray, Naylor, Riley, Longson, Richardson. Replacements: Thompson, Orry, Jones, Squirrell, Pearson.

Vale: Ramwell; Quarry, Jacques, Helme, Fern; Silverwood, Swarbrick; Bradshaw, Branford, Stevens, Harrison, Turner, Bolton, J Wallbank, Powers. Replacements: Bonia, Evans, Lester.

Related topics: