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MATCH PREVIEW: Prescot Cables (H)

Colne v Prescot Cables

NPL West

Holt House

Saturday 15th October - 15:00

Colne return to league action as they welcome Merseyside outfit Prescot Cables to Holt House.

Prescot Cables, nicknamed the Pesky Bulls, are having a much better season than they endured in 21/22, when they finished in 18th position and were fortunate to not have to play in a play-off against Skelmersdale United due to PPG. In the head to head with the Reds last term, the honours were even, with Colne winning 4-0 at Valerie Park thanks to goals from Anthony Williams and Oli Roberts and a brace from Reece Webb-Foster, and Cables running out 2-0 winners at Holt House in March, with goals from the returning Sam O’Halleron and an own goal from Tommy Lent.

This season Prescot have played 10 times winning 4, drawing 3 and losing 3 and currently sit in 4th spot with 15 points. Last time out they overcame Glossop North End 2-0 at home, with goals from James Foley and Jack Goodwin. Their other league wins have come at home to Runcorn Linnets 1-0, away at Widnes 3-0, and 2-0 at home to Witton Albion. After victories over Ashton Athletic 2-1, Skelmersdale United 3-1, and Goole 1-0, their FA Cup run finally came to an end with a 1-2 defeat at home to NPL Premier side Bamber Bridge. Cables overcame Cleethorpes on penalties in the FA Trophy, but were then beaten 1-3 at home to Worksop Town in the next round.

Prescot Cables players to watch - Winger Adam Hammill is their most accomplished player. After spending 11 years at Liverpool as a youngster, he played at Premier league level with Wolves and had extensive Championship experience with several clubs including Southampton, Barnsley and Middlesbrough. Striker John Murphy joined in the summer from Ramsbottom United and he’s Cables’ leading scorer with 6 in all competitions. Just 1 goal behind him is attacking midfielder James Foley, another pre season signing, this time from Witton Albion. Last season’s young player of the year Jack Goodwin is another midfielder with an eye for goal. He has 4 goals to his credit already this season. Manager’s and player’s player of the season, former Stoke City young keeper Mitchell Allen, joined the club from Buxton a couple of seasons ago and he’s been the number 1 choice ever since. Forward Kyle Sambor has been constantly on the move since starting his career with Cables, including a short spell at Colne. He can also count Widnes, AFC Liverpool, Atherton Collieries, Witton Albion, Warrington Rylands, Cammell Laird 1907, Kendal Town, Ytterhogdals IK, Mansfield Town, Litherland and Vauxhall Motors on his CV, and he’s only just turned 24. Hopefully he’s settled back on Merseyside and he has 3 goals to show so far this term. Three players who were plying their trade for Colne last season, now feature for the Bulls. They are right-back Harry Cannon-Noren, centre-half Thomas Dean and midfielder Anthony Williams. Cables are managed by former Marine and Colwyn Bay gaffer Kevin Lynch, who has just completed 12 months in the job.

Last time out for the Reds - The Reds produced their best performance of the season last Saturday in the FA Trophy, away at higher league Hyde United. Skipper Paul Dugdale returned to the defence allowing Tom Fagan to move over to right wing-back replacing the injured Tom McCann. Jack Doherty was preferred up front to Lucas Weaver. Oli Roberts played a deeper role sitting in front of the defence, as the opening quarter of the game was pretty even. A penetrating cross free kick from Jack Redshaw on 19 minutes however changed all that, as the Colne defence couldn’t clear the ball and Glenn Steel was unfortunate to see his attempted clearance end up in the Reds net. At 1-0 the hosts smelt blood and they pressed forward for a second, and were only denied by a great stop from Colne keeper Andre Mendes. Colne hung in and countered when possible, and they got their reward just before the half hour mark when a rebound from a Jack Doherty effort fell to Craig Carney and his finish just inside the left hand post levelled the scores. The Reds’ confidence grew and as half time approached, another counter attack resulted in Owen Watkinson picking up a pass from Carney and his speculative shot through a crowd of players found the back of the net.

The second half was evenly matched as Roberts got on the ball more in the opposition half, but it was a move started and finished by Colner Bradley Roscoe that brought about a Hyde equaliser on 77 minutes. He won the ball and laid it off in the middle of the park, before arriving inside the 18 yard box to stab home a cross from the left. Colne were unruffled however, and continued to take the game to the Tigers, and only two minutes later, a lay off from substitute Lucas Weaver found Craig Carney, who stroked home his second, and what proved to be Colne’s winner. A terrific performance from the Reds and this will surely help stoke the confidence of the team going forward.

Who’s on Ashh’s couch? - Harry Winstanley continues with his gym rehab for another week, then hopefully can start running. Ellis Wallbank has started running since his knee injury and hopefully he’ll be back in a couple of weeks. Tom McCann’s hip flexor issue seems to have settled down and he should be ready for involvement on Saturday. Aaron Turner has a knee issue which is likely to need a scan before any progression. Obviously, Hakan Burton’s shoulder injury will likely see him out for the season.

Team news - Colne manager Phil Brown could well name an unchanged side for the first time. Matty Kardacz has been impressing in defence, and the return of playmaker Oli Roberts has added experience and guile to the midfield. Luke Stowe continues to grow into his left sided role, with Tom Fagan back on his favoured right side, and their energy and pace in both halves give the side an even balance. Jack Doherty bagged a couple of goals in a friendly against Fleetwood on Tuesday night and he’ll be hoping to keep his place up front alongside leading scorer Owen Watkinson. The bench is looking stronger too with Weaver, McCann, Russell, Jones, McDaniel and Lombard ready to step in. Colne currently sit in 17th place in the NPL West division, with 8 points from 8 games.

Prescot Cables seem to be a much improved side this season as Kevin Lynch continues to upgrade his first team. Astute recruitment in the summer, bringing in Hammill, Murphy, Foley and Devine, then adding Dean, plus keeping hold of Allen, Goodwin, Hollett and Gregory, has helped turn around their fortunes. Phil Brown however will take heart from the fact that Cables have only won once away from home this season in the league, and the Reds have won their last three home fixtures, and have been victorious in five out of their last seven games in all competitions. On the pitch, another central midfield battle is likely to prove vital as Carney, Knox and Roberts’ domination proved last week. Hammill’s set pieces will be a concern especially from corners, where Dean’s aerial threat is well known in these parts. Cables fans always travel in numbers, and once again birthday boy Nick Peacock will need to galvanise his singing choir, to help the Reds as the twelfth man, as they did magnificently at Hyde last Saturday. This league is proving to be very tight this season and it is as competitive as it is unpredictable, so another close game is expected at Holt House. But if the Reds can perform to the levels they showed last weekend, and continue to carry out Phil Brown’s mantra of wanting “intensity to be our identity”, then another three points can be theirs, and would be very welcome in elevating Colne up the league table.

Admission Prices are:

Adults - £9

Concessions - £6

Under 16’s - £1

Under 12’s - Free

Upcoming games

Sat 22nd October - Colne v Skelmersdale United - 15:00 NPL West

Tue 25th October - Glossop North End v Colne - 19:45 NPL West

Sat 29th October - Colne v Warrington Rylands - 15:00 FA Trophy First round

Today’s other NPL West games - 15:00

1874 Northwich V Trafford

City of Liverpool v Kidsgrove Athletic

Glossop North End v Macclesfield

Leek Town V Hanley Town

Mossley v Clitheroe

Newcastle Town v Bootle

Ramsbottom United v Skelmersdale United

Widnes v Witton Albion

Workington v Runcorn Linnets


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