Crunch time for North in title race

NORTH boss Jose Alvarez says that three points is the ‘only option’ for his side ahead of the top-of-the-table clash at Port Soif tomorrow afternoon

Fin Whitmore's last game for Rovers this season will be tomorrow's top-of-the-table clash with North at Port Soif. (Picture by Luke Le Prevost 31580092)
Fin Whitmore's last game for Rovers this season will be tomorrow's top-of-the-table clash with North at Port Soif. (Picture by Luke Le Prevost 31580092)

Rovers currently sit five points clear at the top of the FNB Priaulx League, although the chocolate-and-blues still have a game in hand, meaning that a win for them in the crunch tie would put the league in their hands.

‘Every time we play against Rovers it is difficult, we are two very even teams and they are in really good form, so they will definitely be confident coming into it,’ said Alvarez.

‘We need to go into the game with a winning mentality, because if we do not get the three points we would have to depend on other results going our way for the rest of the season and I do not like that.

‘Rovers will not change the way they play as they have been doing so well – they will be physical, quick and dangerous on the counter-attack.

‘I am focusing on our team, though, and we know that if we play to our full potential we are extremely hard to beat.

‘We do have a couple of knocks after our most recent game and the U18s have had a couple of games in quick succession, so we will have to wait and see if everyone is available.’

North come into the fixture off the back of a 6-0 victory in Alderney and three wins in their three Stranger Cup group games means they still have a 100% record in 2023.

Kevin Gillease’s league leaders are also four from four in the new year, most recently seeing off Sylvans in convincing fashion away from home.

‘This game against North is definitely our biggest for a while – both teams are in good form and sit right at the top of the table so we are expecting it to be tight,’ said the Rovers head coach.

‘These are the games that you want to be involved in at this stage of the season, and if we can get the victory it will move us further away at the top.

‘I do not think losing this game puts you out of the title race, but we are glad to have that slight advantage over them in terms of points.

‘I know they have that game in hand, but I would rather be in our position to be honest.

‘North will think it is a game that they need to win, they are going to have to break us down which will not be easy but they will throw everything at it.

‘They have added Kyle Smith recently which is maybe a final roll of the dice for them to try and get ahead of us, as we all know how effective he is.

‘We will be without Louis Falla for the game after he picked up a nasty ankle injury, and unfortunately there is a chance he misses the entire rest of the season which is a huge shame.

‘We do have Fin Whitmore available, who will be playing his final game for us this season as he heads off back to the UK, so I am sure he will be eager to make his mark on the game.

‘He is gutted he will not be able to play for us again this campaign, but he is really looking forward to tomorrow.’

Elsewhere this weekend, Rangers welcome Alderney to the KGV as Chris Tardif’s team look to bounce back from their last-minute defeat at the Corbet Field last weekend.

If Rangers can see off their visitors by at least a two goal margin they will leapfrog Sylvans on goal difference and move up to sixth in the division.

Alderney have only been victorious once in the Priaulx League so far this campaign, and have not picked up a point since their opening day win over Sylvans.

Saturday's fixtures

Rangers v Alderney Nomads, KGV, 1.45pm; Rovers v Northerners, Port Soif, 2pm.

Top Stories

More From The Guernsey Press

UK & International News