Braintree v Macclesfield
3/10 Macclesfield to win 3.40
Macclesfield continue their great run of form and currently sit second in the league and have won all three games in 2015. There is no stopping them right now and have to be backed home and away. Braintree offer nothing too menacing and a midweek 1-1 draw to Ebbsfleet leaves them with a few less rest days than the Macc which always contributes at this level.
In the reverse tie at Moss Rose in the first game of the season Macclesfield won 1-0. To be fair to Braintree they have won four of their last six games which makes good reading no the form guide but also have their FA Trophy replay against Ebbsfleet on Tuesday to worry about and that has to be a priority with Wembley not too many games away.
The Macc manager is certainly confident- ” I’m just trying to do the best job I can, by getting everybody wound up and having a good go at it. We’ve had three big wins in the league, and wins that will give the players the confidence to go up against anybody” Braintree midfielder Davis was quoted with “On Saturday we’ll try to do the business and it should set us up for the replay nicely.” – which indicates the focus on the FA Trophy.
Dartford v Bristol Rovers
3/10 Bristol Rovers to score over 1.5 goals 1.75
Bristol Rovers can smell blood as they look to hunt down the single automatic spot in the division. If they are to push on, they need to win this one against a relegation candidate. Dartford are now a massive eight points adrift of safety following a run of nine defeats in their last ten league games and they’re always likely to concede goals which is what I am backing here.
Bristol Rovers are expected to take close to 1,000 fans to the game as their away support is incredible and this will feel like a home game. Bristol Rovers won at home just 1-0 against Dartford but that was when Rovers were finding their feet in this tricky division. The Gasmen are now going full throttle and goals are on the cards.
Forest Green v Nuneaton; Grimsby v Telford
2/10 Forest Green & Grimsby to win double 1.97
Forest Green and Grimsby are both play off contenders while they face home games against two sides guaranteed for relegation. Both are too short to back as singles and I don’t trust either to cover the handicaps on offer.
Forest Green are coming into form and are looking strong both home and away. They have a goal scorer they can rely on in Parkin who has come to the fore in the few months or so. James Marwood has joined Rovers from Scottish Premiership side St Mirren and is set to make his debut this Saturday too which is likely to make a difference.
Forest Green have one of the largest budgets in the division and are putting it to good use. Other teams news fro Green sees, David Pipe and Danny Coles return after illness and injury but defender Luke Oliver (calf) will not be risked and Dale Bennett is suspended. Nuneaton have lost three games in a row now and are eight points away from safety, they appear destined for relegation this year.
Grimsby are also on red hot form. The arrival of Ollie Palmer has mad a real impact, with two goals in his three games and a man of the match performance in match he did not score. Gregor Robertson and Christian Jolley also arrived on loan at the start of the week and the Mariners have done some very good business this January.
Grimsby are therefore looking good and they face the side bottom of the league on Saturday in Telford who are doomed to life outside the Premier next season.
Forest Green v Nuneaton
0.5/10 Jon Parkin to score anytime 2.30
Already mentioned Parkin above. The main man up top keeps scoring and is on great form. It could easily be a thrashing on Saturday and you would back Parkin to find the net even if it was just 1-0.
Woking v Alfreton
0.5/10 Scott Rendell to score anytime 1.95
Absolutely lethal at this level. Rendell will bag 20 goals+ this season and after scoring twice on his return to action after injury last weekend, he will be looking to add to his tally against and Alfreton side that they are expected to beat. Alfreton were amongst the goals last time out with a huge 3-2 victory over Welling and it could be another goals feast in Surrey.
Halifax v Barnet
1/10 Halifax Draw No Bet 2.19
Despite thrashing Southport at home last weekend 4-0, Barnet have hit their first patch of poor form this season. Two recent defeats away from home against Lincoln (4-1!) and Grimsby (3-1) have left them looking vulnerable with the chasing pack closing in. Halifax have been picking up good results in the last month with fours win in five games at home and are aiming for a Play off spot.
These two sides have not met yet this season although Halifax won 4-0 last season, and Halifax are likely to impose themselves physically in this tie. John Akinde (24 goals) will be the man to stop and if they can take him out the game, the Shaymen will have every chance.
Lincoln v Dover
1/10 Dover to score over 1.5 goals 2.15
Our favourite side this year has to be Dover. Forever defeating the odds with non stop victories. A tricky tie face them here. Lincoln are very strong at home but are on a bad run of form away which has seen red cards left, right and centre and the odd thrashing, the Imps lost 4-0 at Chester on Tuesday and had two players sent-off ( Todd Jordan and captain Alan Power ). They need to stop the rot and can usually rely on games on home turf to do just that with six in a row racked up.
Lincoln’s midfield is depleted though with, Power (suspended), Nolan (suspended), Jordan (suspended), Adams (injured) all out. In defence, Diagne (injured) and others recovering from illness does not make good reading. I expect some expansive play as they need a win to get back into Play Off contention and this should fall into the hands of Dover on the break.
Dover are unbeaten in 13 league games and are now ninth in the league and if they are able to keep up this level they could make a Play Off place. Lincoln have conceded seven goals in two games and Dover should be able to find the net