Keynsham Town welcome Chichester City to Somerset this Sunday in the FAWNL Southern Premier Division.
Only way is up for K’s
Currently pointless and rooted to the foot of the table, Keynsham’s campaign to date has been a stark contrast to last season which saw them win the FAWNL Division One South West convincingly.
Following promotion to the FAWNL Southern Premier Division, the K’s experienced an exodus, with several of their title-winning side opting to ply their trade elsewhere, and began the season having to postpone their opening league fixture due to being unable to field a team.
They eventually kicked off their season the following week, coming from behind to beat Buckland Athletic 2-1 in the FAWNL Cup.
Since then they have lost seven games in a row including voluntarily withdrawing from the FAWNL Cup resulting in a home walkover win for Chesham United and most recently lost 0-5 against Yeovil Town at The AJN Stadium.
In the search for a silver lining, the K’s can take a little comfort in the fact they have a game in hand over Chi and that statistically, very little separates the sides at present – it really is anyone’s game.
Green Army on the road
Much like Sunday’s opposition, Chi also experienced a very turbulent close season that saw their manager and most of the squad that helped them secure a third-place finish last season depart the club.
Appointed shortly after Aaron Smith’s departure in May, former player Sadie Blakely undertook the considerable task of rebuilding the Green Army, signing more than 20 players with several members of the development squad stepping up in preparation of the new season.
Understandably, Blakely’s young side whose average age is just 23, experienced a difficult start to the season, losing six games before earning a point away from home against Gillingham; Megan Fox put the Green Army ahead before Gillingham equalised late on to rescue a point.
Chi lost the following game 1-4 to Portsmouth before winning their first game of the season in the FAWNL Plate, beating Swindon Town 4-2 to progress to the Second Round of the competition.
There’s no disguising the fact that both sides have experienced difficult seasons to date, and will view Sunday’s game as the perfect opportunity to register some vital points, and potentially kickstart their season.