Moneyfields manager Glenn Turnbull offers his view on Wessex Premier title battle ahead of unbeaten Hamworthy's visit

Glenn Turnbull believes Moneyfields are coming up against the leading contenders to lift the Wessex League Premier Division this season with Hamworthy heading to Dover Road this weekend.

Thursday, 14th October 2021, 10:09 am
Tom Cain is expected to go straight back into the starting line up after being rested for Moneyfields' midweek Hampshire Senior Cup defeat. Picture: Daniel Haswell

And the Moneys manager reckons Saturday's showdown will provide his ninth-placed side a solid measure of how far they can push themselves up the table this term.

Moneyfields have managed to take just a point from a possible 12 out of meetings with teams currently in the Wessex Premier top-four.

They drew away at leaders Brockenhurst last month, although were beaten by the same opposition at home (2-0) in August's reverse fixture.

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Defeats have also arrived on the road at second-placed Horndean (3-0) and Baffins Milton Rovers (2-0 - currently in third.

Moneyfields are now preparing to face a team in the top four for the fifth time this season with Hamworthy making the trip to Portsmouth.

And Turnbull says it will provide a great pointer of where his squad is currently at as they look to end the fourth-placed Dorset side's unbeaten league start.

The Moneys manager said: ‘Hamworthy, for me now, alongside probably Horndean are the two who people are saying are champions-elect because it’ll be between those two.

‘They (Hamworthy) are champions-elect alongside one or two others who will run them close. It’s not going to be easy and it starts a real tough run for us.

‘It’s important because it’s a tough game and it’s part of this measure I’m talking around October/November when we can measure where we are.

‘It’ll just be another time for us to assess (ourselves) against what is a good side in this league. It’s just a measure for us to see where we are, really.’

Turnbull is all too aware of Hamworthy's quality after losing to them in the Wessex League Cup final last season while US Portsmouth boss.

That was a campaign which saw Turnbull take USP to the semi-finals of the nationwide FA Vase competition, yet he was in no doubt Saturday's opponents were the best side his US Portsmouth squad faced last term.

Tunbull said: ‘We played them (Hamworthy; while with US Portsmouth last season) in the Wessex League Cup final and I thought they were the best team we faced last year - and we faced some good sides.

‘Devlin (Steve) for them in the cup final was outstanding, he just ran the game, got man of the match in the cup final and was head and shoulders (above the rest). Equally, they only beat Bournemouth 2-1 (in midweek).’

Moneyfields will welcome back leading scorer Steve Hutchings, forward James Franklyn, Matt McGlinchey, Tom Cain and Chad Cornwell after all five were rested for the midweek Hampshire Senior Cup defeat to Lymington.