Laithwaite Independent Financial Advisers

Cards battle league leaders in crucial clash

Glen Harrington
12:00am, Wed 28th Mar 2018
Woking vs Macclesfield Town
Vanarama National League
Friday 30th March 2018

There will be plenty of interest in this Friday’s game between the Cards and high-flying Macclesfield, with implications at both ends of the table and the BT Sport cameras in attendance, this could arguably be viewed as one of the biggest matches of the season thus far for both teams.

It’s been an unsettling fall from grace for the hosts – sitting comfortably in the play-off places in October last year – but now just four points and two places clear of the relegation zone after only three wins in 24 league outings. A combination of injuries, bad luck and poor form have left Anthony Limbrick’s side sweating on their National League survival, and they will now be desperate to break a run of seven games without a win and edge closer to that safety line in front of a strong home crowd on this Bank Holiday weekend.

The Silkmen have had a fantastic season, defying the bookmakers and reported financial issues off the field to be leading the chasing pack heading into the final month of the season, with Tuesday’s 1-0 win over Gateshead putting them back above second-placed Sutton. That victory, which came courtesy of a last-gasp winner from Nathan Blissett, ended a slight hiccup in form for John Askey’s side who had drawn at Maidstone and lost at Dover in their previous two games. With only a three point cushion at the top of the table the pressure will be on them not to slip-up again. Despite being at opposite ends of the form table the Cards will be boosted by the knowledge that they have won their last two games against Macclesfield – 1-0 at home in April 2017 when a Gozie Ugwu penalty scored the hosts a crucial win; and 3-1 at Moss Rose earlier this season.

Remember that you can buy your tickets in advance online and that all Under-16s will have free entry for the match. The games don’t get much bigger than this so please come down and lend your support to the team if you possibly can!

Woking Team News

There could be more changes from the Cards after their 3-0 defeat at Leyton Orient last weekend. Jordan Wynter came through unscathed during his 45 minute appearance and he could make his first start since Boxing Day alongside Josh Staunton. Louis Ramsay is also back from injury and could take the place of either Matt Young or Nathan Ralph.

The Cards have been struggling in midfield of late with Damon Lathrope out permanently and Chez Isaac and Declan Appau also both absent from recent match-day squads. With Regan Charles-Cook having gone off with an injury against Orient, Limbrick could be struggling for options, with Joey Jones possibly set to be moved into midfield alongside Kane Ferdinand and Charlie Carter.

There will be a boost for Woking up front with Reece Grego-Cox returning from international duty with the Republic of Ireland Under-21 side. He will likely come in for one of Jason Banton or Louie Theophanous, while Anthony Cook could return in place of Fabio Saraiva, who he replaced from the substitutes’ bench on Saturday.

Macclesfield Team News

The Silkmen have a squad packed with experience and, clearly, are in fine form after an excellent season so far. They will undoubtedly prove a huge test for the Cards in the game ahead.

Against Gateshead, they started with former Woking favourite Shwan Jalal in goal; a back-four of former Forest Green and Kidderminster full-back Jared Hodgkiss, ex-Port Vale and Luton stalwart George Pilkington, another former Harriers defender Keith Lowe, and David Fitzpatrick; in midfield was veteran Danny Whitaker – who has made over 300 league appearances in two spells with the club – and his namesake Danny Whitehead, who re-joined the club from Wigan Athletic last summer; out wide were Elliott Durrell and ex-Birmingham City prodigy Mitch Hancox; whilst up front was Blissett, on loan from Plymouth Argyle, and Tyrone Marsh.

Their options from the bench include former England youth international Kieran Kennedy, young midfielder Scott Burgess, on loan from Bury, defensive midfielder Callum Evans and striker Scott Wilson. Their reserve goalkeeper is Sam Ramsbottom.

What the Boss Said

Anthony Limbrick on the upcoming game…

“Macclesfield will be an extremely hard game as they have regained top spot with their win mid-week over Gateshead. The pressure is on them in this match and that will allow us to go and be positive and give everything towards pushing for the win.�

Last Time Out

Macclesfield Town 1-3 Woking (Saturday 02 September 2017 – Vanarama National League)

The Cards backed-up an impressive 4-1 win over Torquay the previous Monday with a rare victory at traditional bogey ground Moss Road. Elliott Durrell had given the Silkmen the lead before Jason Banton capitalised on a goalkeeping error to give the visitors the lead. Joe Ward put the Cards in front with a fine finish before Inih Effiong finished the job a minute from time to seal the win. Nathan Ralph was the standout performer with several fantastic goal-saving blocks and clearances.

Admission Prices

• Adults £18
• Over 65s £13
• Disabled (Including carer) £13
• Students (U19) £5
• U16s FREE

Our matchday programme, ‘Cardinals’, will be on sale for £3. Don’t forget to grab your copy on the way in! You’ll also be able to visit the club shop for more great offers.

Next Up

The Cards are back in action on Bank Holiday Monday as they travel to Torquay United in another big match in the fight against relegation. Successive away games follow at Dagenham and Maidenhead before our next home fixture, the penultimate game at the Laithwaite Community Stadium this season, against Bromley.

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