Following a two week break from competitive action, Aldershot Town return to National League action on Saturday, when Chorley visit the EBB Stadium for the very first time. Chorley were promoted from the National League North last season via the end of season play-offs, having finished as Runners-Up to Stockport County. The Shots and The Magpies drew 0-0 at Victory Park in the first meeting between the two sides last September.
Rob Worrall previews the action:
There have been a number of player departures from the EBB Stadium over the last couple of weeks. Loanees Myles Anderson (Barrow), Jack Powell (Crawley) and Max Hunt (Derby County) all returned to their clubs, the latter signing an 18-month contract with League Two Carlisle United just days later. Midfielder Aaron Eyoma has also left the club, following the end of his short-term contract. Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong (Dartford) and Shamir Mullings (Dulwich Hamlet) continue their one-month loan spells. Fitness wise, George Fowler continues to progress well on his return from a long-term absence. Fowler and fellow absentee Alex Finney will be hoping to return to the side sooner, rather than later.
Chorley FC were formed in 1883 and play at Victory Park. Their nickname is The Magpies and they are managed by Jamie Vermiglio. After spending much of the opening decade of this century in the Northern Premier League, The Magpies eventually gained promotion to the Conference North, later to be renamed the National League North, twice finishing in a play-off position. They got off to a flying start in the 2018-19 season, winning their first seven league matches and remaining unbeaten for their first twelve. They spent the majority of the season at the top of the table, but were overtaken right at the end by Stockport County, who won the title by one point, with Chorley finishing second. However, victories over Altrincham and Spennymoor, they finally booked their place in this season’s National League Premier Division.
Jamie Vermiglio was former Chorley Manager Matt Jansen’s Assistant Manager and he took over the reins when Jansen left the club at the beginning of the 2018-19 season. ‘Vermo’, as he is known to many, is a former Magpie player who also turned out for Telford and Northwich Victoria.
The Magpies have found life in the top tier of Non-League football quite a challenge and currently prop-up the 24-team division. However, they are just six points off a position of safety and with 16 matches still to play, they will believe that they can still retain their National League status.
Vermiglio kept faith with the majority (15) of last season’s promoted Magpies squad. Key players retained included; goalkeeper Matt Irwin, Centre Back and Captain Andy Teague, and forwards Alex Newby and Marcus Carver, both of whom have notched four goals to date this season. Chorley’s most notable signing was that of Wrexham striker Chris Holroyd. Holroyd is the club’s top scorer this season with 8 goals in all competitions. Other well-known names joining Chorley this season are Louis Dodds (Chesterfield) and Nortei Nortey (Dover Athletic).
Saturday’s referee is Carl Brook, who has taken charge of 15 National League matches so far this season, showing 59 yellow cards and 4 red cards to date. He refereed Aldershot Town’s 2-0 home victory over Maidenhead United earlier this season.
BBC Surrey Sport will be supplying live online commentary on Saturday afternoon. Tune in to the BBC Sport website (or the BBC Sport App) from 2:50pm for full match commentary with Rob Worrall (@RobShot66) and Guest Summariser, Shots supporter Stuart Griffiths.