(Gosport Borough, 30th Aug 2014, Vanarama South)
The season is a month old already, 5 games down (6 if you include today) and already we?ve seen some highs & lows. But there?s always games to look forward to, and the coming month will see us encounter familiar faces and make our first foray into cup action this season.
First up will be Sutton United away on September 6th, a team that last year gave us our first home point of the season in a 0-0 draw on Bank Holiday Monday. On our travels to Sutton though we fell to a 0-1 defeat in late April during our hectic end of season run in! This time round we?ll be looking to pick up a positive result there against a very tough team. We?ll also be up against a familiar face in Tom Lovelock, a young goalkeeper who spent some time on loan with the Beachboys a couple of seasons ago. As good a ?keeper as he is, I?m sure the lads will be eager to put one or more past him!
3 days later the boys will be back on home turf as we play host to Bishops Stortford, with whom we had an interesting encounter last season! In the away fixture, there was a bit of a clash between our gaffer Danny Cowley and the Stortford boss Rod Stringer, who for a period of time worked at Concord Rangers alongside Danny! On the night we picked up a fantastic 1-0 win, which had earned us some aspect of revenge after losing 2-0 in the home tie. At the heart of the Stortford defence is a former Beachboy in Ashley Miller. Ash spent some time with Concord Rangers before making the switch to Canvey Island, so he?s more than familiar with the lads on and off the pitch here at the club.
The following Saturday (13th September) will see a team visit the Aspect Arena for the first time since 15th September 2012, Wealdstone. They were our first opponents in the playoffs during our promotion season as we went to their place and won 2-1. On their last visit to Thames Road Wealdstone were able to earn a point in a 2-2 draw. I?m sure they?ve missed seeing us so this should be a great encounter!
On Saturday 20th September there?s currently no game scheduled, this is because when the fixtures were put together this was a date we were originally due to play Salisbury. Obviously the issues with Salisbury have been well publicised, and it looks like the lads will have the day off (although they?ll probably be stuck training instead!)
Then there?s the small matter of the FA Cup, our adventure last season saw us reach the 4th qualifying round for the first time only to crash out to a well-drilled and professional Barnet side. This year Danny Cowley and the team will be looking to go at least one better and make the first round proper, and the journey will begin on Saturday 27th September in the 2nd Qualifying Round. Now we wont know who we?re playing until around the 15th of this month, but home or away the lads will be ready to make it a successful start to the campaign!
An interesting month ahead I?m sure you?ll agree, I hope to see as many of you here throughout the month cheering the lads on!
You Are My Concord!
Concord Rangers Supporters Association Chairman, Programme Editor