Rochdale needs to start picking up points in League One and sharpish if they want to avoid a relegation scrap at the end of the season. A game against mid-table Shrewsbury Town will prove another big task for a Rochdale side with only one win so far this season. Last week’s crushing 3-0 defeat against Hull City was their second on the bounce.
Wigan Athletic had been looking like they had turned a corner under John Sheridan following a couple of wins on the trot. However, Wigan’s turbulent season continues to sway this way and that as they hover above the relegation zone so early in the season. A home game against the impressive Plymouth Argyle is yet another test for Latics to overcome.
Moving on to League Two. While Paul Scholes suffered Salford City’s first defeat of the season last weekend, he will be hoping to steer them back up the table with a win over Crawley Town. Beating teams in and around them will be the key to finishing above the playoff places this season. That and bringing in an experienced manager to build on what the previous regime had started.
Bolton Wanderers will face another tough match with an away trip to high-flying, top of the league Cambridge United. A spot many fans expected the Trotters to be occupying this season. A crushing defeat to Oldham Athletic last weekend, again left Ian Evatt scratching his head in disbelief.
Meanwhile, Oldham Athletic will be looking to build on their first win under Harry Kewell with a win against Port Vale this weekend. A run of home games should give the Latics an extra bounce in their step this week.
Into Non-League. Jim Gannon’s Stockport County are setting the early pace in the National League. However, they take a break away from league football to concentrate on FA Cup fourth qualifying action against last weeks opponents Chesterfield. Back to back games rarely see two wins for the same side, however, with County in their current form it will be hard to bet against them in the cup.
Altrincham missed out on football last weekend and are rooted to the bottom of the league by way of playing fewer games than the rest. This weekend they travel to AFC Fylde and will face up against their former striker Jordan Hulme. Surely the FA Cup story writes itself on this one.
Also in FA Cup action is FC United, Greater manchester only other representatives. They host Guiseley, in a match that Neil Reynolds would have been hoping for the crowd cap to be off, with the noise at Broadhurst Park in an FA Cup would have made.
Into the Northern Premier and Radcliffe host Gainsborough Trinity, with Lee Fowler hoping to put a stop to the stop, start results of late. Stalybridge Celtic will be buoyed by the draw against Atherton Collieries and while being off the foot of the table will be hoping to refind that FA Cup form early on in the season.
Brad Cooke’s Atherton travels to Witton Albion, with the young side starting to build a decent foundation of results so far this season.
Trafford host Widnes in the North-west division with Danny Caldecott’s men being unlucky in recent games and the impressive Ramsbottom United look to extend their great start to the season by overcoming Tadcaster Albion.
Many fixtures have been cancelled due to Covid reasons including Accrington Stanley, Ashton United and Hyde United.
It’s a sign of things to come and rather worrying for Non-League football in general. Nobody knows what is going to be of our Non-League scene in the aftermath of all this. We at the Football Manc Cave are urging the people of Greater Manchester to head down to a local match this weekend and help out. £15 goes a long way, a ticket, pint and a program plus some real authentic football on show can reignite your passion for the game if it is waining in recent times due VAR, PPV and other elite decisions.