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PREVIEW: National League South

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Some would say that you would struggle to find a more entertaining tussle at the top anywhere right now that what we are witnessing in the Vanarama National League South.

Not content with top spot changing hands every week, we go into this weekend’s juicy programme with no fewer than four joint leaders.

So the question is which of those clubs, if any, are going to be leading the way come 5pm on Saturday?

The answer could come at Princes Park. Dartford, at the very top thanks to their strong goal difference, challenge fourth place St Albans City – who not only have the same number of points but who also boast a great recent record against them.

Though Ian Allinson’s side a going through a difficult spell. Defeat at Hampton on Tuesday after stuttering to a 0-0 draw at home to Hungerford came on the back of derby defeat in the FA Cup against Boreham Wood.

Allinson says there would be “no better place” to get back on track and who could argue.

Braintree Town will be looking to take advantage of dropped points and Bradley Quinton says Saturday’s home match with away day specialists Havant & Waterlooville will give him some clues to the strength of his squad.

“This is one of those matches which could answer some questions,” he said.

Chelmsford City manager Rod Stringer admits his side are going into the unknown at Chippenham Town but explained last weekend’s win over Dartford gave his players a “massive lift”.

Not just big games at the top, matches at the bottom of the table make this the biggest weekend of the season to date.

Oxford City, in 21st, welcome Concord Rangers in 20th – and the winner could well find themselves out of the bottom three.

There is another big game at the foot of the table. With both sides nervously placed just outside the drop zone, Poole Town’s game with Gloucester City takes on extra significance.

Two form sides meet at Park View Road as Welling United – whose winning run has seen them climb to sixth – take on Wealdstone, a team that last weekend beat long time leaders Truro City.

Lee Hodges’ team, with a game in hand, could well go back to the top if results go their way this weekend.

Truro are at home to Bognor Regis Town who require points for other reasons, why Hungerford and Eastbourne go to war looking for the win that would put pressure on the play-off places.

Still winless are Whitehawk and their match against Weston-super-Mare in Somerset sees the Hawks looking to finally register three points.

Marvin Morgan makes an instant return to Hampton & Richmond having left the club to go back to Bath City last week. Jerry Gill is still looking for his first win as the Romans new manager.

Hemel Hempstead are meanwhile building momentum and a third win on the spin at East Thurrock this weekend will see people sit up and take notice.


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