Halifax Ziggy's Spice House Football League: Leaders take on closest rivals

New leaders Greetland travel to Mytholmroyd for a big Premier Division showdown with Hebden Royd Red Star tomorrow.

Only goal difference separates the pair at the top but Red Star have played two games fewer than the leaders.

Greetland go into the game with four straight wins under their belts and will be oozing confidence.

They will realise the harm a defeat would do to their title hopes and will be hoping there is no repeat of the scoreline in early October when Red Star returned home with a 3-1 win in the sides' first meeting.

Dave Woffenden, Carl Ainley and Mark Hindle will give Red Star plenty to think about whilst the form of Adam Oldfield has been outstanding.

Red Star are experienced campaigners who will be keen to keep their 100 per cent league record intact and give themselves a very healthy advantage in the title race.

Defeats in the last two outings has seen any hope Sowerby United had of becoming champions disappear.

They travel to Warley Rangers, who will be confident following their fine win over Ealandians in the FA Cup last week.

Holmfield have started the new year like a house on fire. They host a Ryburn United side whose improving form was highlighted with a win over Halifax Irish Club last week. If Holmfield can win they would boost their chance of a top four finish.

The meeting at Shelf United, where Elland United are the visitors, is a crucial one for each side. Both still cling to hopes of getting involved in the title race, but defeat for either could be one setback too many.

Recent form suggests Stump Cross can pull away from the relegation zone. Their trip to next to bottom Midgley United is an ideal chance of helping the cause.

Despite four defeats on the bounce Calder 76 should be winners away to a Halifax Irish Centre side yet to pick their first point.

Stainland United lead the first division on goal difference fron Volunteer Arms. The leaders have played two games fewer and look unlikely to slip up against Salem.

The Vol host Hebden Royd Red Star Reserves and may not have things all their own way while Northowram can keep their promotion drive on course by winning against Brighouse OB.

Sowerby Bridge and AFC Crossleys have both played fewer games than the top three sides. Were they to win them they would certainly be in the race for promotion.

Bridge travel to Denholme United where they should win, but AFC Crossleys have what looks a tougher task at Mixenden United.

The top two clash in the second division when leaders Ryburn United Reserves host Copley United. Ryburn will only have five left to play after this game and if they win will be red hot favourites for the title.

Halifax Athletic have climbed into third and a win over Greetland Reserves would keep their slim promotion hopes alive.

Warley Rangers Reserves' position at the foot of the table seems unlikely to look any better after their trip to Sowerby Bridge Reserves.

Unbeaten Stainland United Reserves are the leaders in the third division. They face a trip to AFC Crossleys Reserves, where it would be a shock to see them lose their unbeaten tag.

Sowerby United Reserves are a point behind the leaders and know they need maximum points fron the game with Denholme United Reserves.

Elland United Reserves are flying at the moment and their late title challenge should still be on course after the meeting with Salem Reserves.

Wadsworth United are another side still in with a shout for honours. They take on Volunteer Arms Reserves knowing they need to win.

Calder 76 Reserves may have too much to do now to snatch a promotion place, but they should still come out on top against Elland Allstars Reserves.


Premier Division: Hebden Royd Red Star v Greetland AFC (P.Higgins), Holmfield AFC v Ryburn United (P.Bolton), Hx Irish Centre v Calder 76 (M.Beard), Midgley United v Stump Cross (P.Crouch), Shelf United v Elland United (D.Bartley), Warley Rangers v Sowerby United (P.Bowe)

Division One: Denholme United v Sowerby Bridge (M.Redmile), Mixenden United v AFC Crossleys (P.Crabtree), Northowram v Brighouse OB (S.Hoyle), Stainland United v Salem (G.Porter), Volunteer Arms v Hebden Royd Red Star Res (D.Wright

Division Two: Halifax Athletic v Greetland AFC Res (R.Smith), Ryburn United Res v Copley United (A.Webster), Sowerby Bridge Res v Warley Rangers Res (W.Cotton)

Division Three: AFC Crossleys Res v Stainland United Res (R.Dance), Calder 76 Res v Elland Allstars Res (P.Rosier), Elland United Res v Salem Res (J.Hallos), Sowerby United Res v Denholme United Res (S.Dennis), Wadsworth United v Volunteer Arms Res (C.Salmon)

More previews of the weekend's local football in Friday's Courier