Salford City travel to Maidenhead United for the first time on Saturday in the National League.
The second-place Ammies are on a 10-match unbeaten run after Tuesday’s 3-0 win against Hartlepool United, but now travel down to York Road following back-to-back home games.
After losing our first two away games to Gateshead and Sutton United we are now four games unbeaten on the road, with consecutive away wins at AFC Fylde and Bromley.
However Alan Devonshire’s Maidenhead are starting to pick up some form after a slow start to the season, and have won three of their last four at York Road with clean sheets in the last two.
The Magpies did fantastically last year in their debut season in The National League, finishing just in the top half in 12th, something they will be looking to capitalise on this season.
It took six games and a last minute own goal for Maidenhead to get their first win on the board, when four losses and a draw had raised suggestions that Maidenhead would suffer a form of second season syndrome in non-league’s top flight.
Maidenhead have responded though and managed to put together back-to-back wins to surge clear of the relegation zone, but it is an inconsistency in putting results together that holds them in mid-table.
Goals appeared to be a very early season struggle, perhaps as The Magpies’ new-look front line took time getting used to playing together, but certainly at home it’s not a department they struggle in with 11 of this season’s 19 coming in front of their own fans – an average of nearly two goals per game.
Other than Leyton Orient’s 5-1 victory at Braintree Town, the 3-1 win for Maidenhead at Chesterfield was probably the stand out result on Tuesday night. Summer signing Herson Alves scored twice in the first half before Marc-Antoine Fortune’s penalty pulled a goal back for The Spireites, but Ryan Upward restored the two-goal advantage minutes later as Maidenhead recorded a famous victory.
It came as a response to defeat away at Barrow last Saturday, but now back at home Devonshire will be hoping his side can record back-to-back wins for the second time this season.
One to watch – Herson Alves
The 21-year-old signed for Maidenhead in the summer following his release from Brentford. Born in Portugal, he started off in Benfica’s Academy before a move to London, and signed his first professional contract with The Bees in 2015 where he went on to be a prolific scorer in the ‘B’ team.
Loan spells followed to Hampton & Richmond Borough and Sutton United, but now Alves had joined Maidenhead and scored his first goals for the club at Chesterfield. Capable of playing wide or through the middle, and with good pace, he is certainly one to keep an eye on.