REST OF SEASON PREVIEW: Manchester Central face six crucial games & a cup final

Central v Altrincham Hale

Manchester Central face six more games in the league as they continue their push for promotion, as well as Murray Trophy final, in the remainder of the season.

Central go into the tough final stretch of the season on an impressive run of twelve games unbeaten in all competitions.

Five of Central’s six remaining league games are away fixtures, as well as the cup final match in Hyde, as manager Paul McGuire’s side clock up the miles to finish off their year.

Central currently sit in second place in the league, having won 10 games, drawn two and lost four – giving them a points total of 32 after 16 games.

Cory Knight is top goalscorer for Central with 19 goals in the season, whilst Kaine Martin and Lamin Baldeh are joint-second with eight goals each.

24 March: Pennington (A)

Jubilee Park – KO 14:00

Central then face a trip to Pennington’s Jubilee Park to face a side sat fourth in the table at the time of writing.

Pennington have played a total of 16 games, winning seven games, drawing one and losing eight to give them a points total of 22.

The last time the sides met, back on 23 September, Central came out 4-3 victors – with a brace for both Dan Jones and Timmy Raheem.

Pennington’s top goalscorer for the season is Daryl Cope with nine goals.

07 April: Chadderton Reserves (A)

Broadway – KO 14:00

Central then face a very familiar opposition in their third consecutive away game when they face Chadderton Reserves for the fourth time this season.

Chadderton Reserves sit third in the table currently, having won seven, drawn three and lost just two games this season – giving them a points total of 24 from 12 games.

Central played out a 0-0 draw when the sides met in the league, on 25 November, but the sides also met twice in the Murray Trophy this season.

Chadderton Reserves came out 2-1 winners in the first meeting, on 7 October, but their most recent meeting on 10 February in the quarter-finals of the competition Central came out penalty winners after a 2-2 draw in regulation time.

Chadderton Reserves’ joint-top goalscorers are Ashley Ainsworth and Niall Barnes with 11 goals each this season.

14 April: Atherton Town (A)

Butler Park Main Pitch – KO 14:00

Central’s final of their four consecutive away games is a trip to Atherton Town on 14 April.

Atherton Town sit in seventh position at the time of writing, having played 13 games – winning five, drawn four and lost four games for a points total of 19.

Central came out 2-0 winners the last time the sides met, with goals from Kaine Martin and Luke Monaghan proving to be enough to take the three points.

Ben Rodgers is Atherton Town’s top goalscorer with nine goals this season.

17 April: Boothstown (A)

Bridgewater Park Main Pitch – KO 18:30

Boothstown sit in 9th position having won five games, drawn one and lost the remaining six games they’ve played – giving them a points total of 16 after 12 games.

Central won 3-1 the last time the sides met, on 30 December, with Cory Knight scoring a hat-trick.

Boothstown’s top goalscorer is Lewis Culf with eight goals for the season.

21 April: Beechfield United (H)

Ten Acres Lane – KO 15:00

Central’s only remaining home fixture is also possibly their biggest when they take on first-placed Beechfield United.

Beechfield United are currently top of the league table after 14 games, having won 11 games, drawn one and lost two – giving them a points total of 34.

The sides last met early in the season, on 19 August, when Beechfield came out 2-0 winners. Central also faced Beechfield in the Murray Trophy group stage when goals from Kaine Martin and Elvis Amoakwa gave them a 2-0 victory.

Jaime Sinnott is Beechfield’s top goalscorer with 19 goals for the season, though second-top scorer Jordan Jones-Waite also has 17 goals for the season.

24 April: Wilmslow Albion (A)

Oakwood Farm – KO 18:45

Central round off their league season in the Manchester Football League Division One with an away fixture to Wilmslow Albion.

Wilmslow Albion sit in 11th position currently, having played 12 games – winning two, drawing two and losing eight, giving them a points total of just 8.

The sides last met on 21 October when Central ran out comfortable 3-0 winners, with a brace from Cory Knight and a goal for Mauro Mendes.

Wilmslow’s top goalscorer is Allen Quinny with six goals this season.

4 May: Tintwistle Athletic (N) – Murray Trophy Final

Ewen Fields (Hyde United FC) – KO 19:45

Central’s season culminates in a Murray Trophy final against Tintwistle Athletic on 4 May at the neutral Ewen Fields ground.

Tintwistle play in the division below Central, in the Manchester Football League Division Two, where they currently sit in third position after playing 10 games – winning seven, drawing two and losing just one game.

Central had to overcome a group of Hindley Juniors, Atherton LR Development, Chadderton Reserves, Uppermill and Beechfield United to progress to the knockout rounds, where they beat Chadderton Reserves on penalties in the quarter-finals, before a 4-3 win over Altrincham Hale booked their place in the final.

Tintwistle faced a group including Atherton Town, Radcliffe Juniors, Boothstown, then overcame Atherton Town 1-0 in the quarter-finals and beat Leigh Athletic 3-2 in the semi-finals in order to get to the final.

Tom Burns and Josh Stevenson are Tintwistle’s top goalscorers with 19 goals each this season.

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