Isthmian League

Preview | Potters Bar Town (A)

Up for the Velocity Cup? In a few good hours Whitehawk will play for a place in the Velocity Cup final as a trip to the upper limits of our capital ensues.

To the complete opposite end of the M25 it is with Potters Bar Town the destination, the Hawks are familiar to a lengthy midweek trek to Isthmian Premier opposition in this competition.

Gaining entry to the semi-final after a dramatic 4-3 win at Margate last month that featured a last-gasp Alfie Rogers winner, it sets up a semi-final with Lee Protheroe’s ‘The Scholars’.

And Shaun Saunders’ side arrive on the back of a five-game unbeaten run, with consecutive victories spawning six goals without conceding.

Last time out

The Hawks made it five games unbeaten with a comfortable 2-0 victory at VCD Athletic on Saturday afternoon.

Saunders named an unchanged side ahead of the visit to Oakwood with Tommy Brewer returning to the squad, and his side set the precedent with a dominant display.

Luke Robinson handed the Hawks the lead with a thumping half-volley just outside the box that found the bottom corner, before a restless onslaught kept the hosts on the back foot.

Whitehawk then doubled their lead in fine style seconds after the restart as Rogers produced a moment of brilliance to crash the ball on the volley into the roof of the net.

There would be little else to discuss in the minutes that followed as the Hawks comfortably saw out the remainder of the match, with that strong form extending the grip on the playoffs.

The hosts

A side not visited for some time, Potters Bar Town are a club struggling of late with just one league win since November 26.

Flying high in 3rd position at the time of Christmas Day, the poor form now sees Protheroe’s men in 13th, in search of a late push for the playoffs.

But to do that the form needs to change quickly as they are without a goal in the previous three matches; recently departed manager Sammy Moore now at the helm of Faversham Town.

Reaching this stage of the Velocity Cup after wins against Billericay Town, Hullbridge Sports and Haringey Borough — all by a 3-1 scoreline — it’s been a fairly stress-free route for Potters Bar Town who arrive on the back of a 0-0 stalemate at Brightlingsea Regent on Saturday.

Dejon Noel-Williams leads the goal table with eight goals in all competitions — all of those arriving over a four-game span — whilst Kasim Aidoo and Quentin Monville both have seven.

Previous encounters

We’ve met before! Journey back to the 2018-19 season, when the Hawks suffered relegation from the Isthmian Premier at the first time of asking.

It was in August 2018 that the Hawks travelled to The Lantern Stadium, rescuing a point in the process as a Harry Shooman strike cancelled out Steve Brown’s 34th minute finish, with Lucas Rodrigues dismissed midway through the second half.

And in the reverse fixture Rodrigues proved to be the hero as his lone strike earned his side a narrow 1-0 victory seven minutes from time a smidgen over five years to the day.

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