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This line up will see Stockport County earn 3 points over Eastleigh, agree?

Jim Gannon’s side is trying their best to gain points in the National League and their next chance comes this Saturday against Eastleigh. The Football Manc Cave is looking at the possible line up, both teams last few games and players to look out for.

First 4 Games:

Stockport have done pretty well since they only got promoted last season.

Stockport 0-1 Maidenhead

Notts County 1-1 Stockport

Yeovil Town 1-1 Stockport

Stockport 3-2 Barrow

They’ll be looking to take another three points this weekend, however, they’ll have a hard task with Eastleigh in their sixth season in the National League. They got to the playoffs last season, so if Stockport wants to take anything from this game, they’ll have to work hard.

Eastleigh Form

Eastleigh so far has won against Notts County, 1-0, lost 1-0 to Yeovil, lost again to Barrow, 2-0 and drawn 1-1 with Sutton United. If the Hatters can play at the same standard they did against Barrow, they’ll be in with a chance. Jim Gannon’s side managed to win 3-2 from being 1-0 down.


Frank Mulhern received Man of the Match against Barrow so he will surely be in the line up on Saturday. Jordan Keane found the back of the net so he’ll be guaranteed his position. Adam Thomas also netted the other two goals and will be one to watch for Stockport.

The Hatters will be fighting for three points but even a draw will be an accomplishment from this tough side. Hopefully, Jim Gannon’s side can take the buzz they got from their 3-2 win and take motivation from it.

Stockport County needs to start these two players, agree?

Jim Gannon’s Stockport County side has got underway in the National League. Now that fans have an idea of how their team are performing, the Football Manc Cave take a look at 2 players who will make the biggest impact going forward.

The Hatters got an idea of the standard required in the National League as they lost their opening game against Maidenhead United, 1-0. They then managed to grab a draw against Notts County in the week. Before they play Yeovil Town on Saturday, we are picking out two players who should be the key players for Stockport through they season as they are given the chance…

Elliot Osborne

The 23-year-old midfielder had a loan spell with the Hatters in 2017 after Fleetwood sent him out for experience. In 2018, he signed for Southport who also sent him out on loan back to Stockport. He has now signed a two year deal with Jim Gannon’s side.

Osborne has impressed fans, the team and the manager. This has earned him starts this season and I imagine he will be a great influence to assists, goals and the team pushing forward to produce chances.

Jake Kirby

Another player who started his journey with the Hatters after appearing in a loan spell from Tranmere Rovers. He joined the club permanently in 2018 and has been successful ever since. The midfielder started Stockport’s last game along side Osborne and Jim Gannon’s side managed a draw in their new league campaign.

Gannon explores the possibilities of all his players and plays to their advantages while teaching his players to exploit their opponents. We hope Stockport can perform even better on Saturday with these two players in the mix.

Stockport County’s Gannon will have noticed two stand out points from pre-season

With pre-season drawing to a close, The Football Manc Cave is looking at what Stockport County have given us an insight to for the upcoming season.

Their promotion to the National League was an achievement in itself and now Jim Gannon’s side has put on a great display of football in their pre-season campaign. They managed to beat Cheadle Heath 8-0, Stockport Town, 10-0, Curzon Ashton 2-0, draw with Guiseley 2-2, beat Altrincham 2-1 and Oldham Athletic 2-0.

These friendly games often see unexpected results, high scoring games and a series of new players get a chance to shine. The season ahead may be more challenging for the Hatters, however, here are two things that have stood out for Gannon’s side in the summer games.


They’ve obviously had some high scoring games here and managed to keep clean sheets. If they can try to keep that same form and standard up in the National League, it could determine their place in the table as goal difference will play a huge part.

Some County fans are still trying to get their club to invest in new signings. As the game against Guiseley saw them go 2-0 up only to end up with some sloppy defending that resulted in a draw. Not giving away goals so easy when they’re leading is something Jim Gannon will probably have them working on before the start of the season.

Jake Kirby

The 25-year-old striker has scored quite a few in these friendlies and for that reason, he’s surely one to watch. He’s even got himself the title for the Hatters pre-season leading goal-scorer throughout these friendlies. Kirby was loaned to Stockport in 2015 from Tranmere Rovers. In 11 appearances he managed to bag 4 goals for the Hatters, and when he signed officially in 2018 he found the back of the net 3 times in 20 appearances. Clearly, the striker has blossomed since and I bet he’ll wind up this season as a lead goal-scoring contender.

Stockport County impressive, whilst Oldham Athletic still have work to do

Oldham Athletic and Stockport County are two teams that The Football Manc Cave report on regularly so to hear they would be facing one another in a pre-season friendly was something we couldn’t miss.

This should have seen Bolton Wanderers face the Latics. However, this didn’t go ahead at the request of Oldham who was worried that the Trotters would have cancelled on them last minute, as they have with their other pre-season games.

Stockport have had a promising pre-season campaign and have seen a lot of goals, Oldham, on the other hand, can’t say the same. Fans have become increasingly frustrated and fed up with their performances this summer and have insisted that they sign new defenders.

Seeing the two teams meet was interesting…

First Half

Oldham started out with three trialists in the starting eleven, and two on the bench which should have given fans a little bit of hope that their side was answering their prayers for new players.

However, it only took 4 minutes for Oldham to disappoint. After a Stockport corner saw Ash Palmer power a header straight past Gary Woods and into the back of the net.

Stockport carried on piling the pressure as Oldham didn’t get too many chances for the rest of the half. It was just before half time when Woods was forced to save the initial efforts from Connor Dimaio, only to be disappointed again as Sam Walker found the rebound and rolled the ball into the back of the net.

With Oldham trailing 2-0 at the half time whistle, Laurent Banide’s side had a lot of work to do if they were going to please their fans.

Second Half

The second part of the game saw Oldham come out a little more positive giving fans something to shout about. It looked like they were going to produce some good football initially only getting a shot on goal seemed troubling.

Stockport fans seemed happy with the performance of their side and so they should be. They’ve had a great pre-season campaign and fans have been impressed, even though there’s been a lack of signings over the summer.

It took 88 minutes for Oldham to find a shot on target that actually gave their fans some excitement. Other than that, the second half didn’t have too much to show for either side. Only that the Hatters have a collective squad who looked professional, well-gelled together and ready for their season -compared to Oldham who isn’t giving fans much hope.

2 Stockport County players that should play against Guiseley

Stockport County has been out to prove themselves in pre-season friendlies and their game against Guiseley will be no different. The Football Manc Cave looks at two players who should get a look in on Saturday.

Their pre-season games have shown nothing but one-sided wins. They won 8-0 against Cheadle, 10-0 against Stockport Town and 2-0 against Curzon Ashton. Ahead of their Saturday fixture, we are picking out two players who deserve a chance. The starting line ups against Curzon Ashton and Stockport Town were exactly the same apart from the change from Connor Dimaio to Alex Curran.

Pre-season is the chance for players to show that they’re capable of being a part of the squad. It also gives fans and management insight of who should be given a chance in the league. Now that the Hatters have proven themselves in their opening games and won all three so far, maybe Jim Gannon should give someone else a chance to shine…

Ian Ormson

Stockport’s keeper, Ben Hinchliffe has started their past two preseason games so far, Ormson started their game against Cheadle but has been benched since. Yes, it’s a good way to get him warmed up, however, these games should give everyone a chance. This is why I think Ian Ormson could be given a chance in goal against Guiseley.

Nyal Bell

Bell has made appearances in the past two games, only he didn’t start either match. Against Cheadle, he wasn’t even considered as a substitute. He managed to score twice in their friendly against Stockport Town which saw them win 10-0. Even though he’s already had a chance to show what he’s worth, he should get given a chance to start this game.

Two EFL savvy free agents Stockport County should be looking at

Stockport County could follow Salford City with back-to-back promotions if they play their cards right this summer.

Greater Manchester clubs flood the English Football League, and Stockport County may well be en route to joining them. Stockport won the National League North last season and will be looking to hit the ground running as they enter their new competition.

Next season, County will realistically be aiming to avoid relegation or seek a comfortable mid-table season. However, with their recent run of form, and the motivation to match their neighbours Salford, we could see Stockport push for a high finish.

However, Jim Gannon will need to add quality and depth to his squad in order to make a mark on the National League.

By introducing the following players, for free, we may well be seeing EFL action at Edgeley Park in the 20/21 season…

Fabian Brandy

At 30 years of age, winger Fabian Brandy could increase the quality and experience of the Stockport County squad. Salford City recruited players who have seen the green of the EFL on many occasions, resulting in them dragging the side to where they belong. County could follow suit with Brandy, who has played 130 games in League One, in which he was involved in a goal once every three games. He was also once a part of Manchester United’s academy.

Brandy also has a keen interest in promoting youth talent, he even created an app which allows young footballers to connect with clubs. This kind of character would serve well in the dressing room of a team looking to a bright future.

Sylvan Ebanks-Blake

Ebanks-Blake, coincidentally another ex-Man Utd man, is now a free agent after running down his contract with Barwell. The 33-year-old striker has over 230 appearances at EFL level and over 70 in the Premier League.

Stockport’s defensive ability last season was second to none. They finished the league with the lowest amount of goals conceded.

By recruiting the likes of Ebanks-Blake and Brandy, Stockport’s attacking power will be much stronger and capable of coping in their new division.

Their wealth of experience can also be passed on to teammates, putting them in good stead for the future.

To-Do List: Stockport County must tick off these 2 before the season starts

With the Hatters being promoted, what should they do in order to have a successful season?

Jim Gannon did a great job of getting Stockport from the National League North to the National League, and now fans are hoping they can stay there and progress. I don’t want to see them have a horrible 2019/20 campaign and end up coming straight back down so before the season does start, I’ve picked out two things they need to do in preparation…

Sign New Players

Stockport fans are crying out for a signing of some sort. I don’t even think they care who anymore, they just want someone to put pen to paper. You would have thought that it would have been a priority with the promotion in mind but there’s not been any news.

Fans are now getting frustrated and they’re trolling their clubs twitter feed, by replying to almost every post telling them to announce a transfer. There’s even a post about a statue of a frog being released in a Stockport art trail, and fans have jumped on asking if it will be able to play left back.

Handle The Change Of Leagues

Manager Jim Gannon has spoken about how he thinks the biggest jump in football is promotion and, how football fans class the jump from Championship to Premier League to be the hardest transition. He thinks that the jump from regional football to national football is harder. I have to agree with him, as football fans don’t make as much of a fuss about lower league teams.

Stockport deserves to be spoken about and praised for their efforts, I just hope that they can adapt to this new league, and go from strength to strength. They may eventually end up back in the Football League.

Round table prediction: Our writers predict where Stockport County will finish

Stockport County and Chorley will test the waters of the National League after achieving promotion last season.

The writers here at The Football Manc Cave have submitted predictions about the future of several clubs going into their new 19/20 seasons.

With Stockport County topping the National League North with 82 points and conceding the least amount of goals at only 36. They look strong enough to survive to a tougher competition they will see themselves in over the next year.

Stockport’s Twitter page has recently consisted of the team showcasing their intensive training, as well as preparations on Edgeley Park. Jim Gannon’s men look roaring and ready for their new challenge.

After our writer’s submitted their projections of Stockport County’s chances in the National League 19/20 season, the average stated that Stockport County will finish 12th out of the 24 clubs involved.

Arguably not a bad finish for a newly promoted side, as they can look to improve on that finish and edge towards the EFL League Two over the foreseeable future.

Will Stockport County prove us wrong?

Either by finishing near the relegation places or fighting for a playoff place or will Stockport County steadily impress us by achieving a 12th place finish.

Stockport County fans would you be happy with a mid table finish, let us know below…

Stockport County will be looking for the double bounce promotion, these 2 factors will help that

The Champions of the National League North, Stockport County, are taking a step up to the National League, but what can they do to stay there next season?

As many long-serving Stockport County fans will despise to remember, this huge club was a Championship side until 2002. Due to the club falling into administration, it’s been a downhill slope for the club which has been playing in the sixth tier of English football for the past six years, until now.

This Greater Manchester based club will take the place of its neighbour, Salford City, in the National League next season. If Stockport can follow suit of Salford, they will find themselves alongside them in the EFL League Two, presuming that Salford is capable of remaining in the division.

Stockport County clinched their first league title in 52 years by finishing 1 point ahead of Chorley, but how can they ensure a finish the fans deserve in their new league in the 2019/20 season…


A sore subject for Stockport County would be finances. However, Jim Gannon himself said “Only the best clubs that are investing well or have strong management and teams have done well. So hopefully we can replicate the likes of Salford and Fylde, Harrogate and Halifax, who have consolidated at that level.”

This suggests that Stockport County’s investment over recent years hasn’t been enough to allow the club to grow, hence how they have stagnated in the National League North. But now that they have established themselves as real contenders, it may be time to invest in the future of the club and allow them to progress even further.


Stockport County were very impressive last season, scoring 77 goals. However, in the 2018/19 National League North, teams scored an average of 55.8 goals, whereas, in the 2018/19 National League season, teams scored an average of 57.3 goals. This demonstrates the higher quality and ability of teams in the league, and Stockport needs to be able to keep up with that next season.

Fortunately, Gannon has taken this into account. Stockport recently disclosed that they have signed the striker Alex Curran from Colne, a 20-year-old who bagged 22 goals in 44 appearances last season, and 22 goals in 46 the season before. This young talent will no doubt increase the rate of fire for his new club.

And the manager has some strong words to say about him, “With Alex, we think we have got a player with an outstanding C.V. Over the last two years he’s been one of the main players, he’s a regular goalscorer, provides regular assists and I think we’ve provided a great platform for him.”

Two Key Fixtures That Could Halt Curzon’s Push To Their Highest League Finish

With only seven fixtures left, we are really getting into the business end of the season for the Nash.

There is still a great chance of Curzon Ashton beating their previous highest league finish of 11th in the 2105/16 season, but if they are going to they really can’t afford to be dropping points.

There are a few difficult games in this run in and the stand out one’s for me are both away fixtures.

The first of these is against AFC Telford, who like a lot of teams in this division started strongly, and then have started to wobble a bit. However, their home form is good, and while their defence can be a bit questionable, they are more than capable of finding the back of the net, only failing to score in two games all season.

This could prove problematic for Curzon, who have struggled with their defence at points this season. It could be a high scoring game, which is good for the neutral! However, the Nash will need to make sure they keep things tight, and not make the mistakes they were making earlier in the season where they were scoring and playing well up front, but letting in a few too many easy goals at the back.


The penultimate game of the season for Curzon is likely to be one of the toughest of the season, against the once mighty Stockport. They have been in flying form this season, and playing them away so close to the end of the season while they are pushing hard for automatic promotion will not be an easy fixture. They have looked dominant in several of their games this season, and comfortably put two past Curzon back in November, Curzon need to be at their absolute best to try and stop this freight train and this looks like the one fans most need to worry about.

This fixture, I imagine is local for many Curzon fans, so if you can get down, do! It’s a huge important fixture and it’s so important to get behind the team!

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