Merstham preview

After two disappointing defeats in a row, Wingate & Finchley face an away trip to newly promoted Merstham FC on Saturday 17th October. The Blues were unfortunate to be knocked out of the FA Cup last weekend, succumbing to the streetwise and well-drilled Weston-super-Mare, although Simon Lanes side will be disappointed at the number of opportunities that they didnt put away. On Tuesday night, Wingate dominated the second half but fell to a 2-1 defeat at Canvey Island, with only a consolation goal to their name. Merstham were unbeaten in three games going into Tuesdays League game against Hampton & Richmond, in which they were thrashed 6-1. Whilst this was a disappointing game, their game at the weekend saw them defeat VCD Athletic 3-1 in the Ryman Premier League, with Charlie Penny scoring two late goals to win the game. Wingate will have to be aware of Tommy Hutchings, Tom Kavanagh and Fabio Saraiva, who have netted 12 goals between them this season. However, Merstham have had an even spread of their goals, with 12 different players getting their names on the score sheet so far this season. The Moatsiders, however, have struggled to stop goals going in, keeping only two clean sheets so far this season, compared to Wingates seven. Merstham have conceded 30 goals in the league so far in comparison to a mere 12 conceded by the Blues, however the hosts this weekend have scored two more goals than Wingate. Wingate will be looking to bounce back from the away defeat to Canvey Island in the League and will need Billy Healey to find his form from earlier in the season, where he netted eight goals in the first 10 games. However his glut (five goals) against Spartan South Midlands side, Broadfields United, will give him confidence to begin scoring again in the League. After being rested on Tuesday night, Tommy Tejan-Sie and Karl Oliyide will be fresh to try and continue their good starts to the season, the latter finding the net seven times so far this season. However Wingates highly lauded pressing game will be led by Rob Laney, who has four goals to his name so far this season, including a hat-trick against another promoted side, Needham Market. Merstham have struggled at home this season, winning only one of 10 games at Moatside, and losing eight. Wingates away form, on the other hand, has been impressive compared to last season. The Blues have won seven, drawn one and lost only two of their games on the road this season, an impressive feat for any side. Simon Lane will be hoping his team can continue this good run on Saturday afternoon, before a tough local derby at home to Enfield Town three days later. Match Preview by Nikhil Saglani

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