Somerset Premier Cup Winners 2022 📸 SomersetFA

We here at the Gloverscast always like to get the views of opposition fans and so we’ve been sliding in the DMs of fellow National League fans for their opinions. We asked them all the same five questions;
Who will win the National League this season?
Who will go up through the play-offs?
Who will finish bottom?
Where will your side finish?
Where will Yeovil finish?

… and here’s what they had to say.

Dagenham & Redbridge – @9Men

Dagenham

Who will win the National League this season?
I would expect Notts County, Solihull and Wrexham to be battling it out. Wrexham are obviously big favourites with the bookies and will not stop spending, but will they have enough heart to go all the way? Solihull for me.
Who will go up through the play-offs?
Probably Notts County.
Who will finish bottom?
There’s plenty of sides in trouble this year, and the gulf between the bottom few and the top few looks as big as ever. I think several of the promoted sides will struggle. Eastleigh could end up bottom – they had a terrible second half of the season and I can’t see much changing.

Where will Dagenham finish?
I think we can improve on last season and squeak into seventh. Relative to the other contenders, I don’t think we’ve done enough to go beyond that.
Where will Yeovil finish?
Sorry to say, I don’t like the look of the summer business done by the Glovers. I’d expect you to remain relatively solid at the back but struggle for goals again. Maybe 14th?


Maidstone United – @JPonComms

Who will win the National League this season?
I think Wrexham will win the league because anything else is going to strongly be considered failure. With the money and expectation around Wrexham it’ll be a tough case to argue otherwise. With signings such as Elliot Lee who has dropped a number of divisions, you can see Wrexham have assembled debatably their strongest team yet especially going forward. However chesterfield will be a close second for me considering the strengthening they’ve done throughout the squad by bringing in players such as Armando Dobra from Ipswich who is by all accounts a fantastic signing.

Who will go up through the play-offs?
Building from the last question, I think Chesterfield will be the team to go up should they not win the title directly. Big squad, big budget, great manager in Paul Cook and topped off with some good signings at the moment. It really boils down to luck, mentality and consistency when considering the playoffs, so it’s anybody’s guess as we saw Chesterfield bail out of the playoffs when it mattered last season.

Who will finish bottom?
Maidenhead United – having lost their number one forward Josh Kelly to Solihull, with nobody coming in to replace him as of writing. It will be tough to score goals considering he scored almost 1/3 of their goals past season. I am a fan of the signing of Eweka as someone with potential but for me the other incomings have not been up to a necessary standard. They could however see someone like Koby Arthur perform very well and create opportunities, but with the loss of a finisher in Kelly that could prove difficult.

Where will Maidstone United finish?
16th – I think Maidstone do have a chance of finishing in vastly different areas of the table this coming season. Generally fans are very much undecided on our prospects with many thinking we will struggle to survive and others backing us for a playoff push. For me, smack bang in the middle of these opinions is where we will finish. The club has lofty ambitions, but as the new boys on the block we have to try and secure survival before regrouping next season and aiming higher. With Joan Luque injured and many of our new signings and wider squad unknown quantities in the national league we may take a little while to get going. However, I think we will become more consistent as the season continues and push up to 16th for a comfortable avoidance of a relegation fight by the end of the season.

Where will Yeovil finish?
17th – A Club who for me should be aiming much higher than their recent finishes. The new boss has come in and will have to implement his style within the squad. As for outgoings, Dale Gorman was someone who I thought could offer something to Yeovil this season despite being somewhat underwhelming last year, he has some quality for sure but has since departed. Furthermore the loss of Wilkinson to Woking could prove to be an area of concern, 32 games played last season and his experience going with him will obviously spell some sort of shuffle around at the back. At the end of the day, to move to the upper mid table and playoff spots squad depth is going to be key. As it stands the Yeovil squad isn’t quite big enough and another few additions throughout the squad will benefit them over the next couple weeks. At the moment, 17th for me.


Torquay United – @TORQUAYTALK (Danny Burnell)

Who will win the National League this season?
Anyone other than Wrexham would be a surprise. Must have been embarrassing for them not getting promoted last season.
Who will go up through the play-offs?
Can see a few being in the running. Chesterfield and Notts should be up there. Woking have made some very good signings. The usual suspects like us and Yeovil should be in and around it. I’ll opt for Southend.
Who will finish bottom?
Gateshead. No reason why. It’s miles away.

Where will Torquay finish?
Seventh.
Where will Yeovil finish?
Eighth – pipped to the last play-off place. See answer above.


Woking – @1887Cardinals (Jacob Greenwood)

Who will win the National League this season?
It’s hard to see past Wrexham. However, being such strong favourites can bring its own challenges. Playing Wrexham will be everyone’s cup final this season, whether they like to admit it or not, and that can make it difficult. That said, with limitless amounts of money and an already star-studded squad, my pick would have to be Wrexham.

Who will go up through the play-offs?
Southend started very poorly last year but once they stabilised they looked a decent side. I don’t think they’ll have enough to win the league but I can see them getting in the play-offs. They might be an outsider but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them go under the radar and then win promotion.

Who will finish bottom?
I think all the promoted sides will have enough momentum to avoid last place. A lot of the sides that finished in the bottom half last season have improved their squads but someone will have to finish last. I fear for Barnet. Although their fans seem to think they are doing good business in the transfer window, I think they were poor last season and a lot of their signings hint at a relegation fight rather than a play-off one.

Where will Woking finish?
This season is a fresh start for Woking with only a few players being kept on from last season. At the time of writing I don’t think we’ve replaced the goals scored by Kretzschmar, Effiong and Campbell, and it is for that reason I think we will struggle to meet expectations. I predict we’ll finish 10th.

Where will Yeovil finish?
I can see a similar outcome to last season, maybe a couple of places lower. So I will say 13th.


Wrexham – @RobRyanRed

Who will win the National League this season?
Got to say Wrexham, haven’t we? Another summer which has brought investment and Phil Parkinson has upgraded on those he let go in a bid to provide the squad depth that was missing at the back end of last season. A full season of Paul Mullin and Ollie Palmer promises to bring goals, goals, goals (we hope, anyway). Trying to be optimistic here…

Who will go up through the play-offs?
Let’s go with Solihull Moors. They were mightily unlucky to miss out last season and in keeping Joe Sbarra and Andy Dallas, plus making some very clever signings such as Josh Kelly from Maidenhead, they will be a force to be reckoned with again in 2022-23. Few teams go to Solihull and get much out of them and we expect that to continue. Likely to be run close by Chesterfield in the PO race

Who will finish bottom?
Bottom is always a prediction that can bite us – and it was easy last season going with Dover. We’ll go with Maidstone United. Hakan Hayrettin’s side are going to come up against sides – like us – that have huge budgets for this level and we cannot see them going into many match days as favourites to pick up the points. This is almost certain to bite us on the backside when they come to the Racecourse.

Where will Wrexham finish?
Like other fans answering these 1 and 4 might tally. We’ve been in this league for so long now it seems a tad ridiculous to keep predicting we’ll win it but there’s nothing like blind optimism in pre-season. With the level of investment and the continuity in this squad, surely to god this is it?

Where will Yeovil finish?
Yeovil could finish anywhere from the play-offs to 18th and we wouldn’t be shocked. Jamie Reckord is an interesting pick-up for you. Solid but unspectacular. Looking at Chesterfield, Notts County, Solihull, Wrexham and others like Dagenham, think a play-off position May be a stretch. We’ll go 10th.


Altrincham – @Golfroadgoals

1.National League Winners

I think this year will be FC Halifax Town, the transfer business they’ve done this summer has been amazing.

2.Playoff winners

For me has to be Chesterfield, they have a great attacking line and just seem to me as likely candidates for playoff winners or potentially Bromley for me due to their FA trophy triumph last season.

3. Who will finish bottom?

Maidenhead, for me they’ve struggled in the last couple of seasons and just seem likely to finish bottom or Gateshead maybe due to loosing some key players this summer.

4.Where will Altrincham finish?

With the signings we have made so far especially the return of Jordan Hulme and James Jones I think we will finish anywhere between 12th and 9th, bringing in a number of attacking and defensive signings this summer due to some high profile departures but anywhere mid table for me this season it’s anyone’s season!

5. Where will Yeovil finish?

In my opinion Yeovil will finish 6th to 8th, towards the bottom end of the playoffs. I reckon this season Yeovil will do very well after perhaps not living up to expectations in previous seasons.


FC Halifax Town – @LewisRWalsh

Josh Staunton & Matt Warburton
Pic Mike Kunz

1.Who wins the national league?
I think right now it’s hard to look past Wrexham as this year’s champions to be honest. Paul Mullin and Ollie Palmer proved that they’re easily the best strike partnership in this league from January onwards last season (and so they should be with the money that Wrexham have spent to get both of them) – and now that they’ve added Elliot Lee into the mix, it’s going to take something special to stop them this season.

2.Who goes up via the playoffs?
There’s definitely a lot of teams that you could make solid cases for in terms of who will go up via the playoffs, but for me Notts County will be the ones to do it. Macauley Langstaff and Cedwyn Scott proved to be absolutely lethal up top together for Gateshead last season, so to bring them in together is certainly a shrewd bit of business. There’ll be questions asked of whether they can handle the step up in quality, but I back them to do it – and that bit of firepower will get them up via the playoffs in my opinion.

3.Who finishes bottom?

This is a bit of hard one to predict as I don’t particularly feel that there’s one side that stands out as clear favourites to finish bottom – it could well be the strongest the league has been in years in terms of the quality at both ends of the table. If I were to guess though, then I’d say Gateshead, purely because I don’t know how they’ll manage without the goals of Macauley Langstaff and Cedwyn Scott.

4.Where will Halifax finish?

This pre-season has seen us undergo our biggest rebuild job yet, as on top of losing key players such as Billy Waters, Kieran Green, Niall Maher, Tyrell Warren and Tom Bradbury, we’ve also lost our manager, Pete Wild to Barrow. Further key losses could follow, as centre back Jesse Debrah is heavily linked with a move to Huddersfield, whilst there is also a level of interest in Kian Spence. Our new manager, Chris Millington (who was previously Wild’s assistant) has done a decent job of replacing our outgoing players so far, bringing in the likes of Festus Arthur, Jordan Keane and Mani Dieseruvwe, but I have a feeling that this might just be one rebuild too far – there’s only so many times that you can sign an entirely new squad and have it pay off. With that in mind, I don’t think we’ll be troubling the playoffs as we have been doing in the last couple of seasons, so I’ll put us down as finishing 11th.

5.Where will Yeovil finish?

From the outside looking in, I think the aim of this season needs to be stability for Yeovil. Ownership problems are never easy to navigate and until those can be resolved, the club needs to be as stable as possible in order to make the process of ironing out those issues as smooth as possible, whether that be the current owner coming to his senses and running a club as it should be run or whether a potential buyer is found. The signings so far appear to be solid, if unspectacular, which is probably what’s needed during that stabilising process. With that being the case, I would say Yeovil will finish 14th this season.


Chesterfield – @Tom_Atkins107

Warm up at Chesterfield 📸 Ben Barrett

1) Who wins the League? Chesterfield of course
2) Who wins the play-offs? probably Solihull, they’re not going anywhere from last year and have recruited impressively
3) Who finishes bottom? Dorking. Think it may be too much of a step up
4) Where will Chesterfield finish? you already asked me this

5) Where will Yeovil finish? 15th. I think you guys need a new era, something to pick the club back off the recent slump. I’m not sure you’ve had that just yet but hopefully it happens sooner rather than later

 


Notts County – Gerrit Forward (Paul Smith)

Who wins the National League?
Wrexham. It’s an obvious choice but there’s a reason for that. It’s all set up for them to run away with it, given the resources available to them and the signings they’ve made. It would be a huge failure even to finish second and, with a passionate backing from their many season ticket holders, I think they’ll have far too much this year and will have learned some lessons from last season’s failure.

Who goes up via the playoffs?
I think the usual suspects of the other well-backed and supported teams, such as Chesterfield, Notts County and Southend, will be in and amongst it again. But I think one of the so-called smaller clubs will pull it off as they will feel the pressure less in the cauldron that is playoff football. My candidates are Woking, Solihull Moors and Bromley but I’ll stick my neck out for a the latter to sneak into seventh and make it through, against the odds. They are horrible to play against – especially at home – and have lots of firepower.

Who finishes bottom?
I think the likes of Eastleigh and Aldershot should be nervously looking over their shoulder and will be wondering how the promoted clubs take to the higher level. But, it’s probable at least one of them will struggle with the transition so I’ll go with Dorking Wanderers.

Where will Notts County finish?
I’m confident of the playoffs – again. And much will depend on how high we can place in terms of our chances of overall success. Probably only a home semi-final gives us a sniff, given our away record over the time we’ve been at this level. Our chances of getting second or third are largely dictated by two things – how we replace Cal Roberts, and keeping Ruben Rodrigues being one. And the highly thought of new talent from National League North, including Macaulay Langstaff and Cedwyn Scott, carrying on where they left off at that level being the second thing. If both of those come off for us we could be in business.

Where will Yeovil finish?
I’ll be honest, I thought it was a worry for Glovers fans to see their manager leave for Woking. Having seen Woking’s business this summer though, it was clearly a financial move from him and he is being backed more you’d think with the Cards in terms of bringing players in. Given the money being spent by plenty of teams again, though, it’s hard to picture Yeovil among the frontrunners. Chris Hargreaves is an interesting appointment and I think, given his background, Yeovil will be reliant on unearthing some gems and younger talent to make a push for the playoffs. I think you’ll have enough for the top half.


Solihull Moors – Bandwagon Fanzine – @BandwagonZine

1) who wins the National League
Are we allowed to say Wrexham? There are a lot of strong sides crammed in the bottleneck again, but let’s say Wrexham just because the Wrexham circus is getting boring now and it would be better to inflict in on League 2.

2) who goes up via the play offs?
Again, a lot of strong candidates. We have made some shrewd transfer business and added to our existing quality, so if we can show the same consistency as through 2022 so far, who knows? There will be a few BELTs (Yeovil don’t as a BELT as you seem to accept you are now rubbish again) challenging in amongst it. Expect Chesterfield and Notts to be strong again.

3) who finishes bottom?
Gateshead have had a shocker of a summer considering they won the National League North at a canter. Not sure why people seem to fancy Maidstone to avoid the drop so much too.

4) Where will Solihull finish?
Playoffs.

5) Where will Yeovil finish?
Ask the magic 8 ball; it’s probably been paying more attention to your summer transfer business and preparations…


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