WHAT has happened to DROYLSDEN? They have lost their last six games, let in 39 goals, and in midweek were on the wrong end of a 9-0 home defeat by Evo-stik NPL first division north leaders Warrington Town.
That has left them 19th in the table with 109 goals conceded and a goal difference of minus-61 with 11 games left to play.
There are several theories. Some fans are blaming the implosion on tactical naivety and others on wage reductions at the start of the year. Assistant-boss Aeon Lattie says there are players who haven’t been up for the fight and the club is working hard to bring in some new faces to keep the Bloods in the league.
Former Stalybridge Celtic academy midfielder Amour Cesaire Lingouba could feature tomorrow (Saturday) at home to Brighouse Town, a team which beat Droylsden 8-0 on February 15, two days after the spectacular decline began.
Lewis Fielding stays in goal after Preston North End keeper Steve James’s decision to quit the Butchers Arms.
MOSSLEY visit Ossett Albion with only Caldon Henson and Dougie Carroll missing. Both men are struggling to shake off hamstring injuries.
New signings Josh Brizell and Andy Robertson could figure for GLOSSOP NORTH END who welcome Trafford to Surrey Street.
Defender Brizell, signed from Telford, was a Hyde United regular for several seasons. Robertson, a goalkeeper, was previously with Sheffield FC.
In the premier division, Alex Frost is the only absentee for ASHTON UNITED who face Barwell at Hurst Cross following Tuesday’s defeat at Salford City.
Central defender Adam Jones, who has a damaged Achilles tendon, misses HYDE UNITED’S home clash with Sutton Coldfield. He limped off after only a few minutes of last week’s match at Rushall and may not be able to return this season.
Striker Ayrton Bevins is also out, with tendonitis in his knee, and Kyle Brownhill has been released. Sam Fitton is described as being a couple of weeks from a return. The Tigers have signed Latvian defender Pavel Srnins from Curzon Ashton.
In Vanarama North, STALYBRIDGE CELTIC will be aiming to put two nightmare performances behind them when they travel east on the M62 to take on promotion-chasing North Ferriby United.
Manager Liam Watson again has a full-strength squad to choose from but could well shuffle his pack after the 5-0 loss at Worcester and 5-5 draw with Telford. Watson is expected to give a debut to loan signing Charlie Joyce who has joined until the end of the season from Vanarama National Leaguers Southport.
Connor Hughes could feature for CURZON ASHTON, who are home to Worcester City.
Hughes (21) joins the Nash from Maine Road, following in the footsteps of Matty Warburton. He is second-top scorer in the North West Counties League premier division having scored 21 goals from an attacking midfield position.
Another boost for Curzon is the return of Liam Tomsett after eight weeks on the sidelines with an ankle ligament injury.
However, Matty Flynn has flu, Connor Hampson has a hamstring strain and Jordan Wright has a damaged knee.