Match Preview: Isthmian League South Central Division
Chertsey Town Vs Basingstoke Town
When: Saturday 19th February 2022 Kick-off 3pm
Where: Alwyns Lane, Chertsey, KT16 9DW
Chertsey Town (Nickname – The Curfews), Average 2021-22 Home Attendance 408
Online Ticket Prices: Adults £9, Concessions £6 Under 18 £2
At Turnstiles: Adults £10, Concessions £7 Under 18 £2
When a win is three points and you move on, that was the ultimate understanding from last Saturday’s win against Ashford Town.
We now move into a period of three six-pointers, the first being against third-placed Chertsey Town, who on a Tuesday night back in November handed us a lesson in a 5-1 thrashing at Winklebury.
The Curfews are managed by ex-Arsenal footballer Ian Selley, who won a UEFA cup winners cup medal with the Gunners, before moving onto clubs such as Southend, Wimbledon & Woking.
Chertsey who were idle last Saturday due to the uneven recent performances have been mixed after beating Bracknell Town, lost at home to Chipstead. They not sit in third with a record of PLD 25 Won 15 Drawn 6 Lost 4 GF 50 GA 32 PTS 51
Their strike-force is led by 32 year-old forward Jake Baxter who has 18 goals, 14 in the league. Baxter, joined from Hartley Wintney in 2018. Having had stints at Tooting & Mitcham United, and was previously at Fulham academy. Alongside him is 24-year-old Gary Abisogun, who was at Woking’s before moving to Cobham, then Redhill. Gary has 13 goals, nine in the league. Two other strikers who are both (25), are Tony Halsey & Brian Taylor, and both have five goals this season. Halsey, has previously played for Lewes & Farnborough, whist Taylor a late entry into Non-league football has only played at local clubs.
Midfielder Ashley Lodge (31), is yet another experienced player, who has eight goal this season, including the match-winner at runaway league leaders Bracknell Town, twelve days ago. Lodge joined from Staines Town, and has previously played for Egham Town, Ashford Town and Hayes & Yeading. With him will be attacking winger Andrew Crossley who in various spells has made more than 300 appearances for the club, having also played at Farnborough, Egham Town and Godalming Town. Mark Bitmead (29) Joined the midfield in the 2021 Summer from Uxbridge, but previously at Ashford Town. Has also played for North Greenford United and Harrow Borough. They also have Sam Hurrell, a former Chelsea youth player who the ‘Football Icon’ on TV, who joined them via Cobham.
The defence will see ex-Stokie Jay Gasson in defence, who joined last September to strengthen the squad. Gasson now 36 has also had spells at Woking and Walton Casuals as well as other step 2 & 3 clubs. Daryl Harrison (24), is another central defender who played for Barton Rovers, before joining from Ashford Town last season. Lewis Jackson (28) A 2018 close season signing from Cobham. Plays centrally in the midfield or more usually at full back. Mano Gogonas (25) First club in England was Windsor & Eton, having played to a high standard in Greece. Has also had spells at Kingstonian and last season with Walton Casuals. Plays primarily in defence.
In goal will be Nick Jupp (31), who temporarily retired before joining the Curfews in the 2019-20 season, having played for clubs such as Aldershot Town, Barnet and St Albans City.
Chertsey are an a very experienced team and will be confident on their own pitch, when we face them Saturday.
Your Basingstoke Town Side
A week on from a poor performance, we escaped due to a reckless tackle, and Stefan’s follow-up from his saved penalty, allowing us to win our fourth game in the row, as we head back up to South-West London to take on one of the playoff favourites.
The win now has us with an overall record of PLD 22 Won 13 Drawn 5 Lost 4 GF 47 GA 34 Pts 44 and in fifth place, as we closed in on our rivals with other results going our ways.
Our forwards were largely held in check last weekend, and Conor Lynch, having taken a knock was replaced at halftime, but is expected to be back in the line-up, alongwith Stefan Brown who had the time to follow-up his penalty. Bradley Wilson was also replaced early in the second-half, which allowed the intervention of young Brody Peart, who breathed some life and pace into our attack. It was the perseverance of him that earned us the penalty award. Wilson will be back in the line-up, whilst Peart has proved he can take on more of a significant role moving forward if needed.
McKoy Palmer who was under-par last week, may be challenged for a starting slot, if George Reid is ready to go after his injury at Chipstead.
The midfield saw knocks for both Simon Dunn & Ben Cook, but assume both will be in contention, along with Anton Rodgers and D’Andre Brown. Lloyd Snell an unused substitute last week, will also look for some playing time.
In defence there has been talk of another defender who has joined the club in training, but whether he is signed for this weekend will be down to the Management team. Leaving aside that, defence, by hook and by crook, kept a clean sheet, especially holding out in the last few minutes of the game, when Ashford threw the kitchen sink at us.
With that unless James Haworth is given his slot at left-back, it will likely be the same as last week.
Paul Strudley will be the reliable keeper between the sticks.
Depending on the weather and the game going ahead, Manager Dan Brownlie, will have a number of decisions on how he sets up for what is clear, a game that is a six-pointer, but more importantly a chance for us to atone for that one-sided defeat three months ago.
Hope to see as many of you at the game, weather permitting.
Match Preview by Martin French.