Lough 41 Championship.
Dergview vs Ards.
Saturday 25th February at 3.00 p.m.
Ards travel to Darragh Park this weekend for the first of two back to back games against an improving Dergview side that could well decide their season. The pessimist will say that a team currently in eighth place without a win in the last eight games are destined to stay in the bottom half of the table and are likely to be drawn into a scrap to avoid the relegation places. The optimist will point out that there are three teams sitting on 36 points, just two ahead of Ards on 34 points and Ards have a game in hand on two of those teams so a couple of wins could change the picture dramatically. The trouble is that the game in hand is Dergview away next Tuesday and Dergview, in comparison to Ards at least, are in decent form. In fact after a shaky start which gleaned just eleven points from the first seventeen games, Dergview have picked up a respectable fifteen points from the last ten games, although they do still sit in eleventh place. However a couple of wins against the Red and Blues is not impossible given the current form of both sides and those six points would certainly help alleviate relegation fears for Dergview.
Both teams clearly have a lot to play for over the next two games and although Ards can point to a 5-2 win over Dergview in October, a win that was gained in spite of going behind early on, that was during a run when Ards won four games out of five and were still in with a shout of being involved in the promotion race so isn't by any means a form guide!
The main danger man for Dergview is Mikhail Kennedy who has notched thirteen so far, the next highest is teenage defender Bobby Deane who has five.
A worrying situation for Ards fans is the lack of goals recently, since a run of scoring in eleven consecutive games, the team has failed to score in three of their last six games and leading scorer Adam Salley started on the bench last week against Loughgall. Manager Matthew Tipton has made a few changes in the last couple of games with Dee Dee McAllister and Salou Jallow making starts in a more attacking line up, what will he do this week is the big question. Whatever he decides all Ards fans will be hoping he makes the right call.
Match Officials :-
Referee :- Barry Monaghan.
1st Assistant :- Robbie McMinn.
2nd Assistant :- Victoria Finlay.