RUGBY TOWN: Familiar face back in Saturday’s dugout

Danny Clifton returned to the starting line-up against Leek   Pictures by Martin Pulley
Danny Clifton returned to the starting line-up against Leek Pictures by Martin Pulley

Valley take on Chasetown

Ex-Rugby Town manager Dave Stringer makes a speedy return to the club when he brings his new Chasetown side to Butlin Road this Saturday for an early 1pm kick-off.

Jake Healy in the air against Leek

Jake Healy in the air against Leek

Stringer’s five year stint at the Valley ended in May, but he was soon back in the proverbial hotseat when he replaced the outgoing Marcus Law at the Scholars a month later.

Rugby remain in 21st place in the Evostik NPL South Division despite their 1-0 home win against Leek at the weekend, but the victory has seen them close the gap on the group immediately above – with four teams (including Chasetown themselves) now within three points of Dale Belford’s outfit.

Stringer has made a mixed start at his new club, mirroring Town’s good run in the F.A.Cup this season with a Third Qualifying Round Replay exit of their own - but only slightly bettering Rugby’s poor league form, although Chasetown’s recent draw against bottom club Tividale did mean it was now four games unbeaten in the league for them.

David Kolodynski’s solitary strike against Leek saw Town extend their run without a defeat to three games though, with the club’s all-time senior record goalscorer on target for a fourth time in those three outings.

After a slow personal start to the campaign, the striker has now upped his total to twelve in twenty starts, and will be looking to add to this at the weekend against his old boss.

Following on from Saturday’s game which has an earlier start time due to the fireworks at nearby Winfield Rec later in the day, Rugby will then face Evostik NPL Premier Ilkeston for a second time this season when they visit Butlin Road for a First Round League Cup tie on Tuesday evening.

Valley put in an impressive performance to see off Gordon Strachan’s son Gavin’s side in the First Qualifying Round of the F.A.Cup back in September, and despite Strachan junior’s departure a month ago to join up with another famous footballing son Darren Ferguson at Doncaster Rovers, the Derbyshire club are still pushing for promotion on the edge of their play-off zone in 6th place.

With the postponement of the trip to Shaw Lane Aquaforce on Saturday 14th November due to the Barnsley side’s continued involvement in the F.A.Trophy, Rugby will now face another home game on that date with the rearrangement of the visit of Newcastle Town to Butlin Road.

# Midfielder Jon Adams looks set to leave the club after a short spell at the Valley. Adams signed from Hednesford ahead of the F.A.Cup tie at Brackley and has started five times in total. He could ironically still be back at Butlin Road this Saturday though, with Chasetown one of two teams to have lodged a seven day approach for the experienced non-league campaigner.