In what is in all reality the deadest of dead rubbers, the chance to complete a double over their old Southern League rivals from the 1980s.

The Stones’ 2-1 win over Yeovil back in February was described by then-Glovers’ boss Darren Sarll as “unforgiveable” and then-midfielder (now injured midfielder) Josh Staunton as one where the team “let everyone down.”

A win for the visitors would be their third double of the season – with whipping boys Dover and local rivals Barnet their other victims – and they will be looking to sign off their second season back in style.

On the road they have won two and lost four of their last six, including an impressive 1-0 win at Southend United on Good Friday, but they did lose at the weekend when play-off hunting Dagenham & Redbridge ran out 2-1 winners at Grosvenor Vale.

For a side with probably one of the smallest budgets in the division, a 17th placed finish (the position they find themselves in going in to this match) is more than creditable.

Speaking after the Dagenham defeat, Wealdstone boss Stuart Maynard said: “The top end of the pitch was the difference for us. They can bring Josh Walker off the bench and he probably walks in to most National League squads.

They had a similar philosophy to us and like to pass the ball, I thought we controlled possession but just were not clinical enough in the final third.


FROM THE MANAGER

Speaking of his side’s opponents this Bank Holiday Monday, Wealdstone manager Stuart Maynard said: “They’re a side with lots of pace all over the pitch, myself and Matty (Saunders, the Stones’ assistant manager) will start looking at them over the weekend and come up with a game plan for Monday and plan for the game.

Charlie Lee has come in and took temporary charge for them and picked up some really positive results, so we need to assess and see if they’re playing in the same shape they were playing in, with the same personnel or whether he’s tweaked them or not.


TEAM NEWS

Wealdstone seem likely to go with the same team which finished Saturday’s 2-1 home defeat at the hands of in-form Dagenham & Redbridge.

That included Sam Howes, signed on loan from Isthmian Premier side Horsham late last week, who replaced on loan Fulham stopper George Wickens after he was concussed during a collision in training at the end of lat week.

Midfielder Ashley Charles, who has been missing for the past couple of weeks, returned on the bench on Saturday and could be an option, but long-term injury victim Andrew Eleftheriou is expected to be missing.



FOOT IN BOTH CAMPS

There will be two very familiar faces in the Yeovil Town squad which arrives at Wealdstone in the form of forwards Charlie Wakefield and Sonny Blu Lo-Everton.

The pair were both on the books at Grosvenor Vale last season with Wakefield starting the season with the Stones with Wakefield playing – and getting booked – in the 2-2 draw at Huish Park at the start of last season.

He departed for full-time football with Bromley last January before being released at the end of the campaign.

Sonny Blu Lo-Everton in action for Wealdstone against Yeovil Town last season.

Sonny played ten times for Wealdstone on loan from his parent club Watford including as an 18th-minute substitute following an injury in Yeovil’s 2-0 win in London last May.

For the hosts, winger Rhys Browne could make it back after two months out with an ankle injury tonight. He played more than 60 times in two years at Huish Park before joining Port Vale in the summer of 2019.

His father, Steve Browne, is another connection having had two spells at both clubs. In green and white he was part of the side which won promotion back to the then-GM Vauxhall Conference under Graham Roberts in 1996-97. In 2017, Steve sadly died after a battle with bowel cancer. He was just 52.

However, the strongest links to these two clubs date back to the late 1980s and early 1990s when Brian Hall was manager at both clubs, bringing a number of players with him.

Hall had led the Stones to the Conference and FA Trophy double in 1985 before taking the move to Huish in January 1987 where he picked up a Yeovil side in the game’s sixth tier.

A team photograph from 1988 showing Brian Hall’s Yeovil Town with a plethora of former Wealdstone players features in the programme for the reverse fixture in February.

The Glovers were beaten to promotion back to the Conference by Wycombe Wanderers in 1987, but won promotion back in Hall’s first full season, switching places with Wealdstone who came down that year.

The success of Yeovil and the demise of Wealdstone was down in no small part to Hall attracting a number of players to join him in Somerset.

Neil Cordice and Steve Rutter, the latter who would go on to manage the Glovers, made the move along with full-back Tiv Lowe, Steve Tapley, goalkeeper Bob Iles, and midfielders Gary Donnellan and Andy Wallace.

Hall was sacked after four years and replaced with Clive Whitehead who had an unsuccessful six-month spell before being replaced by Rutter, who was one of a number of ex-Stones who remained in Somerset.

When Rutter left in 1993 his eventual replacement was Hall who brought a number of his old Wealdstone players with him, unfortunately, he could not match the success of his previous spell and lasted just under a year.


Join the Discussion

We love to know what our readers and fellow Glovers think, so please leave a comment or a rating at the bottom of the article or join the discussion on Twitter or Facebook.

5 1 vote
Article Rating

Leave a Reply

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments