PREVIEW | Wrexham v Eastleigh

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Thu 05 Oct 2017

Wrexham v Eastleigh

Kick-Off: 17:30

Location: The Racecourse Ground

Competition: Vanarama National League

Tickets: Click Here

Wrexham look to take their unbeaten run into double figures this weekend in front of the BT Sport cameras as Richard Hill's Eastleigh travel to North Wales.

Wrexham come into the game on the back of two draws on the spin having picked up a point at the Shay on Tuesday. Up against a Halifax side who've started brightly, neither side could break the deadlock in midweek having wasted oppurtunities at both ends. Three days earlier we hosted a Sutton United side who at the time sat top of the pile in the National League. Marcus Kelly grabbed his first Dragons goal which looked to seal maximum points, that was until Ross Lafayette's sweet half-volley smashed against the underside of the bar and nestle in the Wrexham net to steal a point to take back to Gander Green Lane. Wrexham's last victory came three games ago, as the 10-man reds overcame the odds to sink Tranmere Rovers through Chris Holroyd's effort which rifled into the top corner via a touch from the 'keeper in front of an ecstatic travelling army of Wrexham fans.

As for Eastleigh, they come into the game having won just once in their last eight games, and will see Saturday's late kick-off as the perfect opportunity to turn things around in non-league's top tier. They made their way to Meadow Park on Tuesday night, losing out 1-0 against a solid Boreham Wood side. That was their first game in 10 days following the postponement of last weekend's meeting with strugglers Chester FC. The match at the Silverlake Stadium was called off before kick-off due to a waterlogged pitch down in Hampshire, because of this the Spitfires were unable to build on what stands at their last win which came two games ago, an impressive 1-2 away victory over Hartlepool United.

When you take a look at the numbers they don't like, 14 games into the National League this season Wrexham have the best defensive record, better than any other side. The back four have been essential this season for the Dragons, especially when it comes to centre-half partners Manny Smith and Shaun Pearson. The solid and experienced duo have struck up a telepathic link almost instantly and with 356 appearances just in the National League between them they certainly know the standard expected of them. 

Eastleigh have a number of players with real experience in higher divisions and will be hoping they bring that level of play to the Spitfires. The likes of Gavin Hoyte who progressed at Arsenal and has made a Premier League appearance and Garry McSheffrey who made almost 50 appearances in England's top flight for Coventry and Birmingham City, his goal this season against AFC Fylde in the National League means he's scored in all five of England's top five divisions. The Spitfires' top scorer is Ben Williamson, who has four goals to his name. He began the season superbly by getting all four in the first five games of the new campaign after signing in the summer from Cambridge United. He's overdue a goal now going by his history, and is four matches without hitting the net.

Wrexham and Eastleigh have met on six occasions previously, beginning in 2014 following the Spitfires' promotion to step one. The first meeting in September 2014 saw the reds run Eastleigh ragged as Elliott Durrell, Wes York and Andy Bishop fired past the Hampshire side to take a 3-0 victory. In six games Wrexham have won just once, whilst Eastleigh's 2-3 victory at the Cae Ras via a late Ben Strevens goal remains their only win over ourselves. The other four has seen the points shared, including in our last encounter, a 1-1 draw with goals from Matt Tubbs and Jordan White to close the 2016/17 campaign.

Wrexham goalkeeper Christian Dibble remains sidelined following a back problem.

Can't make it to the Racecourse? You can follow the game with FREE live commentary on Calon FM, now also via our Mixlr channel and Mixlr app or the TuneIn app to listen. You can also access live text commentary on Twitter @Wrexham_AFC. Following the game, you can catch our highlights on YouTube - 'Wrexham AFC'.

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