PREVIEW – IRLAM (A)
Is there a chance that the Rams might actually play a league game away from home for the first time since 24 October? Will the weather finally behave itself before to allow us the chance to travel to Irlam?
MATCH: Irlam v Ramsbottom United
VENUE: The RG3 Digital Stadium, Silver Street, Irlam, M44 6JJ
COMPETITION: North West Counties League Premier Division
DATE: Tuesday 19th December 2023
ADMISSION: Adults – £6, Concessions – £4, Under 16s – £2- U11s – FREE.
So, shall we have another go at playing a league game away from home? We have tried to go to Wythenshawe, we had a scheduled trip to Bury and we finally had a cup away day at Hallam on Saturday (much to the chagrin of everyone but them’s the FA rules), so let’s see if we can go to east Manchester for a game with Irlam.
The men from Silver Street took a 1-1 draw from the HWRS back in September when Nicholas Taylor opened the scoring for the visitors only for a Harvey Whyte penalty to level the game and both sides left with a point.
They have had a rather stop-start season with just a single game in December so far, beating Whickham, the side that dismissed Bury from the FA Vase in the previous reound on Saturday but have lost their two league games. With only seven of their 18 games played so far at home in the league, they have a lot of football left to play so their 18th place in the league table is misleading.
As for the Rams, they were hugely disappointed in losing 1-0 at Hallam on Saturday in the FA Vase, a game they dominiated but stumbled to a late strike so it is now the league all the way and the focus firmly on reaching the high echelons of the league table.
Two home games and two away coming up before the year is out – manager Steve Wilkes will have his targets and he will have instiled that into his charges – and he knows that a trip to Irlam is far from an easy prospect but every game has to be taken to its merits and three points is starting to become vital to keep tabs on those play-off places.
As mentioned, this is a return fixture from the game in September which finished 1-1 but we did meet once before in the FA Cup preliminary round (if it is allowed to be called still existing) as the game was played on 12 September 2020 before lockdown number two came around. The Rams won 4-1 that day, scoring four goals in 14 second half minutes.