GW 4 – Ones to Watch

Matt: We’re just four rounds into the new TUG season and already it’s time for our first ‘International Week’ which, as our regular players will know all too well, means it’s time to introduce the always hugely entertaining National Leagues North & South into the mix. There will be fireworks, of that I can assure you! I personally need no encouragement to delve into the lesser known leagues when they become available, but whilst the Premier League, Championship and all Scottish league fixtures aren’t at our disposal, we shouldn’t simply dismiss those of our usual leagues that are still involved. With the Scottish Challenge Cup Second Round matches also included, this gameweek has a bucketful of potential!

  • Dagenham & Redbridge. The Daggers have had a barnstorming start to the season, with three league wins out of three and 9 goals scored in the process. That hefty return sees them sit top of the National League table on goal difference and in Josh Walker they have an in-form striker who has scored in every match this season, and indeed in his last five games (including two pre-season friendlies), ably assisted by fellow NL goal-machine Paul McCallum. In truth, this superb run of form is merely an extension of the 2020/21 campaign, when Dagenham lost just one of their final ten games as they made a late surge for the play-offs. This time around Daryl McMahon and his squad seem determined to put plenty of points on the board early doors and on Saturday they’ll fancy adding another three, as they face a Wealdstone side who picked up their first point of the season against Southend Utd in midweek (D&R won 2-0 at Barnet the same night). That 0-0 draw also brought a rare clean sheet Wealdstone’s way, just their second in six months worth of National League fixtures! Contrary to their hosts, The Stones suffered a horrific run of results towards the back end of last season; an awful eight game losing streak between April and May actually included a 5-0 home reversal against Dagenham themselves! Those of you who back The Daggers this weekend will be delighted if we see a repeat of that scoreline I’d imagine!
  • Queen of South. The Challenge Cup draw up in Scotland has naturally thrown up ties that you may well want to take a look at/punt on, but the introduction of the even lesser known ‘B teams’ and ‘2 teams’ has given some of those matches a real air of uncertainty. One fixture that does warrant further attention in my opinion sees Queen of South face Broomhill, which pits Championship against Lowland League. Boasting another of my favourite club nicknames, The Doonhammers may not have made a brilliant start to the season, but they’re scoring goals consistently and that’s what matters in this game; aside from a 1-0 home defeat to Kilmarnock, QoS have banged in 15 goals in six competitive games going back to early July. Those of you who have been playing TUG prior to this season may well know Broomhill without actually realising it; they previously operated under the name BSC Glasgow and they’ve featured in this game numerous times before. The part-timers have already played ten league games so far, but they’ve only collected a total of nine points, conceding 16 goals along the way. Broomhill are also yet to keep a clean sheet on their travels this season, losing 2-1 at East Kulbride last weekend, and it’d take a braver person than me to bet on that changing at Palmerston Park on Sunday afternoon! Good luck to you all.