Tuesday National League & National League N/S Predictions and Best Bets

Andy

Maidenhead v Chesterfield (National League)

Tuesday 18th January – 7:45PM KO

Chesterfield comfortably put aside any concerns about an FA Cup hangover on Saturday. 

The Spireites became just the second side to score more than once against Barnet since the arrival of Dean Brennan and did so spectacularly, scoring four at The Hive to move within a point of league leaders FC Halifax Town. That result means victory at Maidenhead United will see them regain their place at the top of the table and with Kabongo Tshimanga and Akwasi Asante scoring two in their last two, they will more than fancy their chances.  

Alan Devonshire’s Magpies remain perennial underdogs, a tag they enjoy. Last season, they accrued 59% of their points against sides in the top half of the league table – a higher percentage than any other side. However, they have struggled this season at both ends and find themselves just outside the relegation places. COVID certainly hit the Berkshire outfit harder than most in the National League and they are showing signs of recovery with bodies returning and performances improving. However, they could still be without Sam Barratt and Kane Ferdinand, two of just three players to score more than one goal this term.  

I don’t doubt that Maidenhead United remain dangerous opposition but Chesterfield are chasing the title for a reason and should have enough experience and quality to get over the line here.  

Prediction: Chesterfield to Win, 1.8 on Betfair (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)


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Stockport v Eastleigh (National League)

Tuesday 18th January – 7:45PM KO

Stockport County cannot stop scoring. Their 4-1 victory at Altrincham last week meant they have now scored 28 goals in nine league matches since the sacking of Simon Rusk and 45 goals in 15 matches across all competitions. The appointment of Dave Challinor has seen Rusk’s preferred three-at-the-back system remain but there is far more attacking intent about their play as shown in the number of goals they have scored with even deeper-lying midfielders Will Collar and Ryan Croasdale getting on the act in midweek.  

Ben Strevens has a seemingly innate confidence in his side to get results and that is showing with seven wins in their last 12, including victories against Notts County and Dagenham and Redbridge. However, they only had 10 senior outfielders available for their FA Trophy game on Saturday with key players such as Tom Broadbent, Cavaghn Miley, Ben House and Tyrone Barnett missing. They also lost their last away game 4-0 at FC Halifax Town.  

While most of Stockport’s results under Challinor have come against sides lower down in the table, they go into this one with a near fully-fit squad and full of confidence. Meanwhile, Eastleigh will be hoping they have senior options available from their bench. It’s hard to see anything but a home victory.  

 Prediction: Stockport to Win, 1.5 on Betfair (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)


Gateshead v Telford (NL North)

Tuesday 18th January – 7:45PM KO

For a moment, you wondered if the wheels might be coming off for Gateshead after a stellar start to the campaign. They were defeated by local rivals Blyth Spartans then dropped points at home for the first time all season against fellow promotion contenders Chorley in a 1-0 defeat. Their recovery has been impressive, beating both Bradford Park Avenue and Hereford FC away from home, scoring six goals in the process. Their home form remains near-immaculate with seven victories and one defeat, averaging 2.13 goals per game.  

AFC Telford United could only dream of such form. The Bucks sit rock bottom of the table having won just once since the opening day of the season – a 2-0 home victory against second bottom Farsley Celtic. They are without a victory in 10, are yet to win away from home this season and are conceding an average of 2.4 goals per game in front of their travelling support. Paul Carden appears to have a near-impossible task turning things around at the New Bucks Head.  

It’s hard to look past anything but a home victory here. If further evidence was needed: Gateshead have scored in seven of their eight home matches this season and AFC Telford United are yet to keep a clean sheet while averaging 0.9 goals per game scored away from home. It’s a long old journey for a part-time club to make and it’s hard to imagine the Shropshire outfit heading up with much positivity.  

Prediction: Gateshead (-1), 1.91 on Betfair (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)


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Kidderminster v Hereford (NL North)

Tuesday 18th January – 7:45PM KO

Kidderminster Harriers’ 2-1 victory over Reading at the weekend well and truly put the club back on the map.  

The Worcestershire outfit may have been forgiven by supporters for being a little distracted in their following league match given the FA Cup Fourth Round draw provided a bank-busting tie with Premier League West Ham United at Aggborough, but Russell Penn’s side are made of stern stuff these days. They beat second bottom Farsley Celtic at home on Tuesday before travelling to Darlington and returning with a 1-0 victory on Saturday. Apparently, tired legs and minds aren’t an issue when you are unbeaten in ten league matches.  

Things aren’t coming quite as easily for Josh Gowling and Hereford FC. Having flown through the divisions following their re-birth, the Herefordshire outfit have found consistency tougher to come by in the sixth tier. Five consecutive victories and clean sheets in November provided cause for optimism but they are without a victory in their last four, split over a month and a half due to postponements.  

Admittedly, Hereford can’t be judged too harshly given their return to action has come in the form of defeats against Brackley Town and Gateshead. However, Kidderminster have won 11 and drawn three against the sides below them in the league table and are riding the highest of highs.  

Prediction: Kidderminster Double Chance, 1.36 on Betfair (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)


Dulwich Hamlet v Dorking (NL South)

Tuesday 18th January – 7:45PM KO

Dorking Wanderers are truly finding their feet in the National League South. After an indifferent start to the season, the Surrey outfit have won each of their last six, scoring 22 goals in the process. Most impressively, their goals are coming from everywhere – nine players have scored during this run. It’s not a new thing either with Dorking averaging 1.82 goals away from home this season. They have won each of their last three on the road and should head into this one full of confidence.  

So, the hosts stand no chance, right? Not exactly. Dulwich Hamlet are also occupying a play-off position, averaging 1.56 points and 1.89 goals scored per game at home this season. Not just that, they are doing so in front of the division’s biggest crowd, averaging over 2700 fans per game at Champion Hill. Gavin Rose’s side aren’t respecters of league position either – two of their three home defeats came against sides placed 18th and 20th in the division while they put five past second place Ebbsfleet United.  

A bumper crowd, two sides whose game plans evoke the spirit of Kevin Keegan’s Newcastle United side of the mid 90’s – if you score three, we’ll score four – means this should be a great spectacle and a fine advert for non-league football.  

Prediction: Over 2.5 Goals, 1.57 on Betfair (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)


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