Hat-trick of derbies to light up Wessex scene

Three mouthwatering derbies dominate the Wessex League scene tonight.

Tuesday, 30th August 2016, 7:00 am
Dave Carter. Picture: Neil Marshall

In the premier division, Horndean welcome back ex-manager Dave Carter – now in charge at Moneyfields – to Five Heads Park (7.45pm).

Fareham Town host AFC Portchester in a fixture dubbed ‘El Creekio’ by the fans of both clubs (7.45pm).

And in division one, United Services will entertain league new boys Baffins Milton Rovers at Burnaby Road (7.45pm).

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Moneys boss Carter is hoping to use his experience at Horndean to plot an eighth successive win for the Dover Road outfit.

‘It is always tough at Horndean with their sloping pitch, which can be a big factor,’ he said.

‘I spent seven years up there and like to think I know how to play it.

‘We will have to be prepared to go and battle because Michael Birmingham will have his players well up for it.

‘There is no way he will allow his players to lay down and make it easy for us.

‘We will have to match their work-rate and then hopefully our quality will show through.’

The visitors expect to have goalkeeper Matt Shortt and central defender Dan Hayes back from injury.

Lewis Stockford returns from work commitments.

Birmingham, who took over at the Deans this summer, has made a good start.

However, he is looking for his team to bounce back from a 2-1 defeat at Brockenhurst.

‘We have to start putting our chances away,’ he said.

‘Moneyfields are now one of the big hitters in the league.

‘I’m hoping they have a bad day and we have a good one.

‘We are under no pressure – nobody expects us to win.’

Charlie Walker, Tom Price and Ian Humble are all expected back for the hosts.

At Cams Alders, Fareham and AFC Portchester are both looking to bounce back.

On Saturday, the Reds lost 3-2 to Amesbury while the Royals suffered a 2-0 defeat at Cowes Sports.

Royals boss Graham Rix said: ‘It is vital we get back on track as quickly as possible.’