PREVIEW Atherton Collieries v Glossop North End
Thursday 28th September 2017 @ 12:59 by Adam Higgins
Previews Sports

Glossop North End will be hoping to maintain their impressive form when they embark on a trip to newly-promoted Atherton Collieries on Saturday (kick-off 15:00 BST). 

The Hillmen are enjoying their best winning run for a while and looking to make it six victories in a row at The Kensite after beating Brighouse Town, Ossett Albion, Kendal Town, Droylsden and Colne in succession – scoring 15 goals and conceding seven in the process.

Paul Phillips and Steve Halford’s men had risen to second place in the Evo-Stik First Division North as a result of their headline-making sequence, but were pipped by Scarborough Athletic after their 4-1 victory over Goole by virtue of goal difference.

However, Glossop remain level on 22 points with the Seadogs, who they play next Tuesday at Surrey Street in what should be an intriguing contest.

Interestingly, the Hillmen have played against nine men for long periods in each of their last two games, beating Droylsden 3-2 and Colne 3-1, with both opponents having two players sent off. Although, that factor shouldn’t detract from what were excellent wins for Glossop against tough teams, regardless of the numerical advantage.

The Hillmen are yet to draw on the road this season, having won three and lost two of their five away league games so far.

They boast the joint-second leakiest defence in the top half of the table, having conceded 13 goals in 10 matches, but scoring goals hasn’t been a problem in the main – with experienced striker Ben Deegan, who has always been prolific at this level, chipping in with six thus far as Glossop’s leading marksman.

Meanwhile, pacy winger Jude Oyibo has caught the eye on a number of occasions and the teenage sensation, who has settled in very well at Surrey Street, was named the Player of the Month for August by the club’s supporters on Monday.

In contrast, Atherton Collieries have made a solid, if unspectacular start, to life in the eighth tier of English football since taking the North West Counties Football League Premier Division by storm last term.

The Wigan-based outfit, who celebrated their 100th anniversary last year, were crowned champions after racking up 100 points, scoring 103 goals in 42 league games and have adapted relatively well to the step-up so far.

They sit in mid-table, 14th place to be precise, having accumulated 12 points from nine games but have been largely inconsistent, as you’d perhaps expect in the early weeks of the campaign.

Michael Clegg’s men have scored as many goals (10) as they have conceded and have a record which reads three wins, three draws and three defeats so far in the league.

On home soil, the Colls have fared better, losing just one of their first five league outings at The Kensite, winning two and drawing two.

After a memorable 3-1 success over Colwyn Bay in their previous home game last Monday, they were brought back down to earth with a 2-0 defeat against Mossley at Seel Park last Saturday.

The clash with Glossop is the first of two successive games against local opposition for the Colls, with a trip to Ewen Fields to place seventh-placed Hyde United to follow next Tuesday (October 3), as three of their next four games in all competitions will be on the road.

It remains to be seen whether Matt Grimshaw will play for the Collieries after the defender revealed this week he has taken the decision to leave the club in search of regular first-team football.

Like Atherton, Glossop have had a free week to prepare, with no midweek fixture, so should be fresh for Saturday’s match.

The Hillmen are unbeaten since a 4-2 defeat at Ramsbottom United at the start of the month. Now, in the final game of a busy September consisting of seven matches, they will be hoping to extend their excellent run with another three points on their travels.

Supporters who aren’t able to make the trip can still follow the action as it happens by tuning in to Hillmen Radio. Details can be accessed on Twitter, by following @hillmenradio or listen live at .