Taking a look at Nuneaton Town v County


Having shaken off the disappointment of Ferriby's late equaliser County turn their attention to ending the  100% record of Saturday`s opponents Nuneaton Town in National League North. With the solid return of 10 points from the first 12, this is the first chance of the season to see how the new Hatters match up against a leading side, a challenge where last season's squad was found lacking at times.


Nuneaton Town have been in existence since 2008, being formed after the then Conference North side Nuneaton Borough had been liquidated. They made their way from Southern League Division One North to the top level of the National League thanks to three promotions in four seasons. The last promotion brought them up against County three seasons ago. County suffered a 2-0 defeat with Andy Walker scoring on half time and Adam Walker despatching a penalty late on

Saturday 17 November 2012 - Blue Square Conference Premier

Nuneaton Town (1) 2 (Brown 45, Walker 82p)
Stockport County (0) 0 Att. 1,221

Nuneaton: Adam Smith, Kevin Malaga, Gavin Cowan, Gareth Dean, Simon Forsdick, Tom James, Stephen O'Halloran, Adam Walker, Wes York (Connor Taylor), Andy Brown, Tyrell Waite (Kyle Patterson)

County: Ian Ormson, Sean Newton, Joe Connor, James Tunnicliffe, Alex Kenyon, Tom Collins (Danny Whitehead), Craig Hobson, Jordan Fagbola, Matty Mainwaring, Paul Turnbull (Sam Sheridan)


Nuneaton appointed Kevin Wilson as boss in the summer, after he had taken Ilkeston to the verge of The National League in only their fourth season. Its four wins out of four for the side still known as Boro. The first game saw them win 3-2 at Chorley thanks to goals from Maguire, Williams and Morgan. Since then they have ground out three 1-0 wins at home to Brackley and Bradford and most recently at Lowestoft on Tuesday.

Marlon Harewood.

In the first of these veteran Marlon Harewood opened his tally for Nuneaton.


Neither of today's squads include players who played for the opposition in the past.


The Nuneaton starting line-up has not been changed this season so far. Kevin Wilson returned to his previous club to bring in several of his play-off side and as a result seven of the men in the Town squad were in the Ilkeston 16 for the FA Cup tie at EP last October. These include the keeper Jordan Smith, who is on loan from Nottingham Forest.

Jordan Smith.

Our hosts most recent recruit is Coventry City midfielder, Ivor Lawton. He has joined on a youth loan and may well find himself on the bench on Saturday. The players Wilson will be selecting from are:
NameApp.GlsPosKnown Past Clubs (may not be complete)
Sam Bobes-Gilroy 0..0 M Hereford U,  Westfields,  Marbella FC [spa]
Joe Brothwell 0..0 W/CF Arnold U,  Basford U,  Carlton T
Shane Byrne 4..0 M Leicester C,  Bury (L),  Bury,  Barwell,  Bray W [ire],  Corby T
Liam Canavan 0..0 M/F Hinckley U,  Thurnby Nirvana
Callum Chettle 4..0 M Ilkeston
James Clifton 4..0 FB Aston Villa,  Brackley T,  Oxford C,  Kettering T
Luke Delaney 0..0 M Walsall
Rob Duffy 0+3..0 F Rushden & D,  Stamford (L),  Cambridge U,  Kettering T,  Gainsborough Tr,  Stevenage Bor,  Oxford U,  Wrexham (L),  Newport Co,  Mansfield T,  Grimsby T,  Lincoln C,  Ilkeston
Jack Dyer 0+1..0 M Aston Villa,  Burton A,  Kidderminster H (L)
Marlon Harewood 4..1 F Nottingham For,  Haka [fin] (L),  Ipswich T (L),  West Ham U,  Aston Villa,  Wolverhampton W (L),  Newcastle U (L),  Blackpool,  Barnsley (L),  Guangzhou R&F,  Nottingham For,  Barnsley,  Bristol C,  Hartlepool U
Nathan Hicks 0..0 M Kettering T,  Histon,  Alfreton T,  Leamington(L),  Leamington,  Alfreton T (L)
Claudiu Hoban 0..0 M Leicester C,  Northampton Spen,  Kettering T,  Rugby T,  Daventry T,  Histon,  Spalding U,  Histon,  Tamworth,  Corby T,  Sutton U,  Kettering T
Cieron Keane 0+3..0 D Wolverhampton W,  Notts Co
Jordan Keane 4..0 CD Stoke C,  Tamworth (L),  Alfreton T,  Lincoln C (L)
Lynas King 0..0 D Stoke C
Jack Lane 4..0 LB Macclesfield T, Newcastle T(L), Woodley Sp(L), Leek T(L), Salford C, Oadby T, Hinckley U, Oadby T, Ventura Fusion [usa], Sacramento Rep [usa], Ilkeston
Ivor Lawton 0..0 M Coventry C
Joe Maguire 4..1 CD Scunthorpe U, Ilkeston T, Staveley MW, Harrogate T, Buxton, Ilkeston
David Morgan 4..1 M Nottingham For, Lincoln C(L), Chesterfield(L), Dundee(L), Tamworth(L), Ilkeston
Aaron Opoku 0..0 F Fulham, Hereford U, Coventry Sphinx
James Reid 4..1 M Nottingham For, Rushden & D(L), Hinckley U, AFC Telford U, Ilkeston(L), Ilkeston
Rasmus Repstad 0..0 f Vindbjart FK [nor]
Jordan Smith 4..0 G Nottingham For, Ilkeston(L)
Ryan Smith 0+2..0 D Coventry C
Adam Walker 0..0 M ex-Coventry C, Nuneaton T
Aaron Williams 4..2 F Walsall, Redditch(L), Romulus(L), AFC Telford U(L), Worcester C, Rushall Oly


There are more first team playing connections than I expected between the two sides. One of last season's squad, Danny Glover, was with Nuneaton for the 2011-12 season. Glover scored Telford's first National League North goal of the season on Tuesday from the penalty spot. The following season Boro recruited Stephen O'Halloran after a trial, who helped keep County at bay on our last visit to Nuneaton. Stephen is , after two years at County, now with Salford City.

Last year they recruited one of County's former Irish contingent, in Leon McSweeney. A free transfer signing from Cork City in January 2008. By the end of the following season Leon had played nearly 60 games for the Hatters, including all three play-off games. He moved on to Hartlepool when County were in administration. His stint at Nuneaton brought 4 games in September, but all were lost.

Leon Mc Sweeney.

 Keeper Chris Dibble had a loan spell at Nuneaton later last season, playing 10 games. The move came about a year after his spell at County, also from Barnsley, on the same terms.


That late goal on Tuesday dropped County to a share of 3rd place alongside Tamworth. AFC Fylde's improvement continued on Tuesday and they are now the lowest placed ream within a victory of catching County, as shown below. There was no change at the top of the goal scorers list with Ashley Sammon's 5 goals for Corby leaving him ahead of 3 men who have struck 4 goals.

1 Nuneaton T 4 2 0 0 2 0 2 0 0 4 2 4 12
2 Solihull Moors 4 2 0 0 6 0 1 1 0 5 2 9 10
3 COUNTY 4 1 1 0 3 2 2 0 0 3 1 3 10
4 Tamworth 4 2 0 0 3 1 1 1 0 3 2 3 10
5 Harrogate T 4 2 0 0 5 2 1 0 1 2 2 3 9
6 AFC Fylde 4 1 1 0 4 2 1 0 1 2 4 0 7

The start of the Evostik Northern Premier League last Saturday gave me chance to check how several of last season's County squad got on - only to find many more ex-County men playing alongside them. Kyle Jacobs was in the Ashton United side that drew 0-0 with Mickleover Sports. Alongside him for all or part of the game were former County first teamer Joe Connor, and other ex-Hatters Chris Baguley*, Chris Sutherland and Adam Morning. 

Hyde United, as they are known again having ended their link with Manchester City, also drew. They shared four goals with Grantham Town and Scott Spencer made his debut, as did former County youngster Ayrton Bevins. Colwyn Bay, where former County reserve player Phil Staley is Director of Recruitment, gave debuts to Jordan Fagbola and Chris Sharp. Also involved was Sam Barnes. Bay lost 0-1 when Jordan tried to head back to his keeper, only to loop it over him as the number one came out to claim the ball. Northwich Victoria, where former County backroom man Dave Conlon is now Assistant Manager to James Gannon, introduced Nathan Woolfe for their opening game, a 4-0 win at Ossett Town. Also in action were Iain Howard and Josh Amis*, but there was no sign of the two County youngsters who have been with Vics during pre-season. 

As mentioned above Salford City recruited Sean O'Halloran during the summer, with Tunji Moses also joining. Both played in their 0-0 draw with Marine. Meanwhile in Bamber Bridge's game with Warrington Town debutants in a 2-2 draw were Jamie Milligan for the hosts, and Daniel O'Donnell, for the visitors. Finally, Bobby Lofthouse was an unused sub in Glossop NE's 1-1 draw with Spennymoor. Aside from those marked * all those mentioned above were making their club debuts.

Ian Watts


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