AFTER three weeks without a game Salford City return to action against Chorley at The Peninsula Stadium on Saturday (KO 15:00).
The winter weather has hit the fixture list hard, with two fixtures against Darlington being postponed due to the snowy and cold conditions.
However league leaders Salford haven’t been deterred and are gunning to get going again to maintain or extend their eight point lead.
While Salford haven’t been in action, both Harrogate and Brackley have dropped points – Harrogate in their game in hand against Kidderminster and Brackley in their scheduled game at FC United – but the onus is now on Salford to make the most of that chance.
In the way though is Chorley who are reliably difficult opponents and well accustomed to National League North football.
After a slow start to the season, including defeat to Salford back in August, The Magpies have picked up their form and reached the FA Cup First Round where 10-man Fleetwood Town came from behind to win 2-1.
With that FA Cup run league form also picked up, and Matt Jansen’s side have crept up the table to find themselves just outside the play-offs with games in hand to play.
Last season required a last minute equaliser from Michael Nottingham – who has scored in each of the last three meetings with Chorley – to salvage a point after Salford struggled to break through a resolute Chorley.
“Whenever you play Chorley it’s always a tough battle, always a good game,” says defender Carl Piergianni.
“They’re a good side, you know whenever you come up against them that it’s going to be a scrap so it’s going to be a battle, but we’re confident that if we match the work rate and battle hard that we’ve got enough in our dressing room to win the game.”
It’s been three weeks since Salford last played a competitive game, and it’ll be five weeks since the last game at The Peninsula Stadium by the time the teams take to the pitch on Saturday, but Piergianni says the team are looking forward to returning home.
“It’s a bit of a strange feeling, it feels like a long time since we’ve had a game but the squad’s in great spirits, we know we’re still on a great run of seven games in a row and everyone’s been training hard, working hard every day so it’s been really good and we can’t wait to get started tomorrow.
“It feels like forever since we’ve played at home but we’ve managed to go on the road and win games so coming back home is a great delight and we’ve got a couple of games over the festive period at home now which will be great.
“The lads are all looking forward to tomorrow and we can’t wait to play and see what the atmosphere is like tomorrow!”