Yeovil Town welcome Eastbourne Borough to Huish Park this weekend looking to make it six matches unbeaten on home soil in National League South.

But their opponents, who were the subject of a takeover by travel entrepreneur Simon Leslie, in the summer will be a test having won their last two matches at home to Weston-super-Mare last weekend and then a 2-1 win at Havant & Waterlooville on Wednesday.

Yeovil Town News

Manager Mark Cooper has singled out Eastbourne midfielder Yaser Kasim as one of a number of gifted players who he will be pitting his wits against this weekend.

The Iraq-born player worked alongside Cooper when they were together at Swindon Town around a decade ago and has considerable experience in the EFL.

Speaking about his opponents, the manager said: “They have got a long of young, technically very good players and athletic players.

They have a wonderful player in midfielder, Yaser Kasim, who I worked with at Swindon, so they have some real ability in their team but they are young.

The manager (Mark Beard) has gone in there and it is his first job, he’s a terrific young coach and I am sure they will start to climb the table, so it is going to be a tough game for us and we are well aware of that.

Cooper will have midfielder and son, Charlie, available after missing the midweek 3-2 win at Weston-super-Mare through a one-match suspension, but defender Jamie Sendles-White is an injury doubt having gone off in that match.

The performances of the midfielder Josh Owers, who made his first start since signing permanently in the summer on Tuesday night, and substitute Zac Bell has given the manager “one or two decisions to make” ahead of the weekend.

Read more about Mark Cooper’s pre-match comments – here.

Eastbourne Borough News

Blackpool striker Zak Emmerson has arrived at Eastbourne Borough on a season-long loan deal as they prepare to make the trip to Huish Park.

The 19-year-old, who has been capped by England at youth team level, played under manager Mark Beard when he was Under-18s coach at Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion were Emmerson’s form earned him a move to the North West last summer.

Speaking of the new arrival, Beard told the club’s website: “In the two seasons we worked together, he scored almost a goal a game and earned a call up to the England youth sides before his move to Blackpool.

He will add fire to our front line, and has the right character to fit in well with the rest of our squad.

He’s a different type of forward to what we’ve got, he’s a natural finisher and has that aggression in the air that we’ve perhaps missed so far.

Since the takeover by Leslie, taking over from a Community Investment Company (CIC) which remains a minority shareholder, there has been a focus on youth.

The arrival of youth specialist Beard, who replaced  Danny Bloor who departed and eventually joined National League South rivals Welling United, has seen a fit, strong-running style adopted from the full-time outfit.

One familiar face is Jack Clarke, who had his second spell on loan at Huish Park last season and joined Eastbourne following his release by Chesterfield in the summer. He has been a regular starter this season but missed the midweek win at Havant having picked up a knock against Weston last weekend. 

The manager’s son, Sam Beard, is playing in midfield (sounds familiar as well) after joining on loan from Barnet. But one player definitely missing for the visitors is forward Stefan Vukoje, who suffered an anterior crucial ligament injury last month which has ruled him out for the season.

Beard Senior, who was a midfielder for Millwall and Sheffield United in his playing days, praised goal-scorers Fletcher Holman and Decarrey Sherriff in his post-match comments after they made won 2-1 at Havant & Waterlooville on Wednesday night.

Holman came off the bench to give them an 80th minute lead against a Havant side which had been reduced to ten men six minutes earlier, only for the home side to equalise through a penalty in the 90th minute – before Sherriff struck deep in to injury time.

Beard said: “ I was a little bit disappointed that once we scored that goal and they are down to ten men as well, we start trying to play like the Harlem Globetrotters, doing stepovers and all sorts.

“I would have been so disappointed if we had lost or drawn that game because they then got a penalty, but the character of the boys was a different class.

They kept going and again and, as much as I am pleased for Fletch, it is the same for Decarrey who has worked so hard.

If you want to find out more about Eastbourne, listen to Ben’s chat with supporter Trevor Fuggle on our latest ‘A foot in the opposition camp’ edition – listen here.

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