Preview: Central v Atherton Town

Kaine - Cory

Manchester Central look to continue their seven game unbeaten run in all competition when they host Atherton Town on Saturday at Ten Acres (14:00 KO).

Central sit in second place in the Manchester Football League Division One table, four points ahead of their opponents Atherton, who sit in fourth but have a game in hand on Central.

Atherton have lost just three games this season, one fewer than their Central, but have also drawn just one game fewer than they have won – four draws to five wins.

Central, by comparison, have won seven of their 13 games played this season and drawn two. Both teams have strong positive goal differences.

Central go into the game on the back of a convincing 7-1 away win against Hindley Juniors in the Murray Trophy last Saturday.

That match saw 65th-minute substitute Frank Detou score four goals and provide an assist. Cory Knight netted a brace, and Kaine Martin also found the back of the goal in an impressive run-out for the team.

Central’s last league game was a 1-1 draw with Elton Vale, in which Marcello Ahrin got Central’s goal in first-half injury time.

Central will be looking to continue their remarkable home form in the match, having picked up 10 out of a possible 12 points in their last four home fixtures.

Atherton’s last match was also a win in the Murray Trophy – a 3-0 victory over Boothstown – while their last league match was a 1-1 draw too, against Chapel Town.

Their cup game against Boothstown was two weeks ago though, so Central could have an advantage in match sharpness, having played more recently.

The threat for Central will likely come through their impressive attacking options, with top goalscorer Knight boasting an impressive 15-goal haul this season in 20 appearances. Martin has also contributed heavily this season with a further seven goals for the team.

In comparison, Atherton’s top scorer Henoc Mukendi has just eight goals – though he has only made 10 appearances.

Atherton’s goals are also shared more significantly among a wider spread of players, with Gareth Shaw and Ben Rodgers having scored seven and six goals this season respectively.

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