MATCH PREVIEW | Lancs Trophy, West vs Ashton Athletic

Tuesday 6 November 2018 (7.45pm), Partners Foundation Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy
West v Ashton Athletic
Brookburn Road, Chorlton, M21 8FE
£5 adults / £3 concessions / free for under-12s
Please note: due to competition rules, this game is not inclusive for season tickets holders

While Brookburn Road hosted a bonfire over the weekend, Steve Settle will be hoping for fireworks on the pitch to help bring some sparkle to a season that has so far failed to launch. Tired analogies out of the way, this Lancashire Trophy tie could act as an ideal way for West to find their rhythm once more, free from the pressure of league football – and against rivals who are similarly languishing in the wrong half of the table.

Over the weekend, West travelled to Barnoldswick but found themselves reliving the same old story: defensive lapses either side of the break meant there was too much ground to make up before the final whistle. Ben Woods, having been incredibly unlucky with the amount of shots he’d had hit the woodwork so far this campaign, found the net direct from a corner – and for a brief moment it looked like West may steal a point, but Ryan Eiselt was denied by the post. With October ending winless, any form of victory would be rapturously received by the Brookburn Road faithful.

While Ashton are 16th in the table, this doesn’t tell the story of their season – an FA Cup run saw them beat AFC Liverpool, Skelmersdale, and Morpeth, before an away trip to York City was a bridge too far. Recent form has been indifferent – stunting a run of games at the start of last month that earned them 13 points from 5 matches – but as Ashton have already proved this season, they are a more than capable cup side.

Both sides received a bye in the first round of the cup. This was also the stage where both teams excited the tournament last season: West losing 2-1 to Lancaster, and Ashton being defeated 3-0 by Clitheroe. Some of the more eye-catching names that may be in the hat for the victors are Southport, Chorley, Bamber Bridge, Atherton Collieries, and Colne.

At a glance

West v Ashton Athletic
18th Position 16th
LLLLL Form (all competitions) WLLDL
16 Played (NWCFL) 15
2 Won 4
2 Drawn1 3
12 Lost 8
8 Points 15
16 Goals for 14
42 Goals against 22
Saul Henderson (8) Top scorer (all competitions) Joshua Nicholson (9)
West v Ashton (NWCFL era): P10 W1 D6 L3 F13 A29

Recent meetings

5/5/2018, League – West 4 (OG, Bailey 2, A. Woods) Ashton Athletic 2
23/12/17, League – Ashton Athletic 7 West 1 (Whyment)
5/11/17, League – West 2 (Mendes Gomes, A Woods) Ashton Athletic 5

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