Altrincham vs. Boreham Wood
Saturday 13th November 2021, 3.00pm
Moss Park, Vanarama National League
Match Preview written by Aaron Bennis (BWFC Media Assistant)
This Saturday, Wood return to league action as they look to extend their stay at the top of the National League table, paying a visit to Altrincham during the international break.
The Robins are currently comfortable in mid-table, sitting 11th with six wins and six defeats.
Wood progressed to the FA Cup Second Round after their win over Eastleigh last time out, a week after moving to the top of the table with victory against Southend United.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
After leaving Crewe Alexandra, Toby Mallarkey enjoyed a brief stints at Leek and Nantwich Town, before joining Altrincham in 2019. A successful 2019/20 season saw him help the club win promotion from the National League North in his debut campaign via the play-offs, with a 1-0 win over Boston United in the final. He would go on to make 31 appearances in another successful season, helping the club to a comfortable 17th place finish. He has made a total of 71 appearances during his time in Greater Manchester.
33-year old Ben Pringle has carved out a distinguished career in the lower reaches of the Football League. After being released by West Bromwich Albion, he endured spells at non-league sides Newcastle Blue Star, Morpeth Town and Ilkeston Town, before catching the eye of Derby County and subsequently joining the Rams on a one-year deal. After extending his stay at Pride Park, he captained the reserve team that won the 2009/10 Central League Central Section title and was also named the club’s Young Player of the Season, leaving briefly on loan to Torquay United. Upon his return, he decided to leave on a permanent basis in search of regular first team football, and signed for Rotherham United in the summer of 2011. His form in his second season at the New York Stadium played a role in their successful promotion attempt out of League Two, and he would prove his worth for the Millers when he helped the club achieve a second successive promotion, starting in the play-off final that they would win on penalties as well as his 18 goal contributions earning him a place in the 2013/14 League One Team of the Season. Pringle would enjoy a successful four years in Yorkshire, leaving the club with 168 appearances to his name to join Fulham in 2015. He would sign for Ipswich Town on an initial one-month loan after just half a season at Craven Cottage, and joined Preston North End at the end of it. Brief loan spells at Grimsby Town and Tranmere Rovers preceded permanent stints away at Gillingham and Morecambe, before dropping to the non-league in the summer to join Altrincham.
Altrincham’s number nine is a product of the Burton Albion academy, signing his first professional contract ahead of the 2016/17 season before spending time out on loan at Mickleover Sports and Matlock Town where he scored 34 goals during his time at the latter and was also named in the Northern Premier League Team of the Year. His form for Matlock as well as in pre-season after his return to Burton earned him another loan move to a National League North side AFC Telford United, ending the season as top scorer with 25 goals. He would extend his contract at Burton and make another step up in divisions, joining Hartlepool United on another loan spell, but would struggle to nail down a place in the starting XI and had the loan cut short at the end of 2018. He soon returned to Telford this time on a permanent basis and signed an 18-month contract, finding the net 12 times by the end of his second season. He would be on the move again ahead of the 2020/21 campaign, joining League Two club Stevenage for a short-lived spell before leaving on loan to Chesterfield. He would drop to the National League on a permanent basis after just a season at Stevenage, signing for Altrincham in the summer and scoring on his debut in a 3-1 victory over Torquay United.
LAST TIME WE MET
Altrincham 2-3 Boreham Wood
Saturday 20th February 2021
Moss Lane, National Premier
Wood were able to see out victory over Altrincham despite a late scare, coming out 3-2 winners.
It was fast start for the visitors, who opened the scoring after just seven minutes when Kane Smith tapped home a great cross, setting up the theme of the first hour of the game. The Wood were rampant in the opening stages and kept up the pressure when Gus Mafuta tried his luck from a distance, but was denied by Tony Thompson in the Altrincham goal. The game would seemingly look like it would move beyond the host’s grasp when Connor Hampson received his second yellow card in quick succession just before the half-hour mark and was sent for an early bath, before the away side quickly made the numerical advantage count when Kabongo Tshimanga flicked the ball home following a pass from Junior Morias. It nearly got even better as Jamal Fyfield might have added a third before half time, but he shot just over the bar. A third would soon be on its way though, as a sweetly struck volley from Corey Whitely made it 3-0 shortly after the interval. The Robins’ defence had no answer for the fantastic interplay between the likes of Whitely, Tshimanga and Morias, with the latter going close to finding a fourth but his effort was well saved by Thompson. Matty Kosylo gave the hosts a lifeline just before the hour mark when his well struck shot beat Nathan Ashmore to make it 3-1, instilling some life into the Altrincham team. Yussifu Ceesay nearly pulled another back a minute later but his effort went just wide, however they would successfully make it 3-2 just five minutes from the end when Tom Peers converted a Joel Senior cross. Despite a lot of Robins’ pressure, Wood were able to hold out and take a much needed three points back to Hertfordshire.
PRE MATCH WORDS
HOW TO WATCH
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