Gateshead play host to Boston United in the Vanarama National League North this Saturday at Gateshead International Stadium (3pm kick off).
The Heed come into the weekend with a 100% home record over four games on Tyneside so far, most recently defeating Gloucester City 3-0.
Mike Williamson’s side have scored 16 league goals in seven games, beaten only by Spennymoor Town (17), and have scored half of those at Gateshead International Stadium.
Boston currently sit 11th with three wins and three defeats to their name, but have won five of their last six games in all competitions.
The Pilgrims earned three points at home to Guiseley last time out, while their most recent away fixture in the league ended 2-0 in favour of Leamington on September 11.
Craig Elliott’s squad list boasts a number of former Gateshead players, including forward duo Jordan Burrow and Jordan Preston.
Preston’s brother, Fraser, has been in fine form so far this season with four goals in eight games since joining the club in the summer.
“It’s the toughest game of the season, simple as that,” said player-manager, Mike Williamson.
“They’ve recruited really well and they’ve got a few former players of ours who always look forward to coming back to their old ground.
“We know how it difficult it was [during the 2019/20 season] when we played them home and away so we’re looking forward to it.
“We know it’s going to be a battle on every front so we need to make sure we keep to our levels.”
“Gateshead are very sharp, they’re good how they play football,” Boston United manager, Craig Elliott, told the club’s official YouTube channel.
“I think they’ve got the best home record in the league so it’s a tough game but one to be looking forward to with two good teams going at it.
“We’ve one loss in six now so we’ll go there confident and look forward to a good game.”
Jack Hunter and Elliot Forbes have been involved in training this week as they continue their return to fitness, but Danny Greenfield and Luke Williams remain longer term absentees.
Last Time We Met
Saturday’s meeting will be the first time we have faced Boston since the 2019/20 Vanarama National League North play-off semi-final, when the home side emerged 5-3 winners at The Jakemans Stadium.
JJ O’Donnell’s opener was cancelled out by two penalties, both converted by Jordan Thewlis, in the first half before Alex Nicholson returned the favour with a penalty of his own in the second 45.
Jay Rollins and Jake Wright made it five as Boston took control late on before Elliot Forbes added a third with five minutes to go, though it proved to be only a consolation.
Gateshead XI: James, Forbes, Williamson, Cooper, Nicholson, Agnew (Blackett, 78’), Hunter (Keating, 70’), Deverdics, O’Donnell, Olley, Preston.
Substitutes: Guthrie, Greenfield, Pattison.
Tickets are available to purchase online or on the gate via cash or card payment, and admission is priced at:
Adult – £15
Concession – £10
U16 – £5
Home supporters who are season ticket holders or have purchased tickets online can enter Gateshead International Stadium from 1pm via the sliding doors adjacent to turnstiles three and four, and will have early access to the Mick Thornton Suite.
Home fans purchasing tickets on the gate via cash or card can enter from 1:45pm via the double doors adjacent to turnstiles three and four and will have access to the Mick Thornton Suite and concourse upon entry.
Away supporters will enter the stadium via turnstiles one and two and will be situated in the North of the Tyne & Wear Stand. Alcohol, hot and cold drinks as well as hot food and confectionary will be available to away fans on the concourse.
Parking is restricted at Gateshead International Stadium due to other events during the day and alternative parking will be available via the North field near the junction of Neilson Road and Tyne Main Road.
Gateshead made it five home wins in a row with a 3-1 victory over Boston United at Gateshead International Stadium.
Macaulay Langstaff netted twice and Cedwyn Scott added to the tally as Gateshead set the tone for the first half, although Boston were handed a glimmer with Fraser Preston’s solo effort.
A contrasting second half saw few chances for both sides and Gateshead emerged winners for the fifth time in a row on home soil.
Mike Williamson made one change to the side that started at Runcorn Linnets last weekend with Louis Storey dropping out for Williamson to slot into the back four.
The Heed started the afternoon as they have done so many times this season as Langstaff raced onto a long ball before slotting past George Sykes-Kenworthy in the sixth minute.
Boston settled into a spell of possession after going behind but rarely threatened Jacob Chapman as Williamson and company held firm at the back.
Cedwyn Scott then made it two just before the midway point of the half, grabbing his sixth of the season as he side-footed Adam Campbell’s low cross into the back of the net.
Former Heed striker Jordan Burrow passed up a half chance a few minutes later when he sent a cross wide of the near post, but Preston halved the lead with 36 minutes gone as he squeezed a low shot past Chapman from the edge of the box after a solo run.
The lead was restored to two instantly after kick off however as Langstaff worked himself some space after a driving run before sending a low strike into the bottom corner via a slight deflection.
In contrast to a first half which saw four goals, the second 45 was a much more subdued affair with Gateshead protecting their lead.
Boston’s shape saw them sit slightly higher into The Heed’s half than in the opening 45, but they struggled to create chances regardless.
A familiar face in Jordan Preston came on to try and inject life into the visitors’ performance, but his impact saw him strike the side netting as Williamson’s men kept their shape and defended resolutely.
Substitute Paul Blackett had a late penalty claim turned down, and he was in turn booked for what the referee judged to be simulation despite his protests.
The clock ticked away and the score remained the same as Gateshead earned a fifth consecutive home win and moved up to fourth in the Vanarama National League North.
Gateshead XI: Chapman, Tinkler, Williamson (Storey, 83’), Nicholson, Jacob, Bailey, Olley (c), Ward, Campbell (Forbes, 90’), Scott (Blackett, 73’), Langstaff.
Goals: Langstaff (6’, 37’), Scott (22’)
Yellow Cards: Bailey (20’), Olley (89’), Blackett (90+1’)
Boston United Goals: Preston (36’)
Attendance: 1,198 (63 away)