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Preview: Aldershot Town

Back-to-back matches return to the Kuflink Stadium as the Fleet walk out under the lights for the first time this season to take on a common foe from past years in Aldershot Town, writes Katie Humphris.

Saturday might not have ended up how the vast majority of the crowd desired or indeed expected given the Fleet’s upper hand for the most part – and despite Greg Cundle clawing a goal back with 20 minutes left, the Fleet couldn’t quite summon the equaliser their efforts deserved.

So it’s on to a quick about-turn to Tuesday night with potential reunions for Toby Edser and Craig Tanner against the club they last played for before joining the Fleet in 2022 and 2021 respectively.

That club, of course, is Aldershot Town, who will also be looking to bounce back following a thrashing away to Oldham which saw them finish the game with 10 men – new signing Kwame Thomas being shown a second yellow in the 84th minute, after which Oldham added two more goals to their total.

Aldershot are no strangers to the Fleet and this will be the 27th time the two clubs have met. Indeed the previous version of the Shots went head-to-head with the previous version of the Fleet in the late 1920s when the two clubs were in the Southern League together.

Two of Fleet supporters’ most lingering and precious memories came at Aldershot – the 2008 FA Trophy semi-final and the 2018 National League play-off eliminator – but aside from those highs, the Shots have the edge in meetings with 12 wins to Fleet’s eight.

Botti Biabi with the acrobatics the last time Aldershot were here

One of those Aldershot wins was their last visit to the Kuflink Stadium when they prevailed 2-1 in our relegation season in 2019/20. Neither side has any survivors from that match and the visitors have a number of new faces added this summer by new boss Tommy Widdrington who was appointed in April. The former Eastbourne made the switch from Kings Lynn Town and has brought with him several players from East Anglia, including his son Theo.

There is a new face between the posts, with Dutch goalkeeper Jordi van Stappershoef signed in July and the international flavour continues with Swiss youth international striker Lorent Tolaj. Former Maidstone striker Jack Barham is a more familiar campaigner, while incoming skipper Stuart O’Keefe won Gillingham’s player of the year as little as two years ago.

The Shots’ big loss in the summer was their player of the year and former Fleet loanee Tyler Cordner who moved to York City for a reportedly hefty fee but recruitment over the summer has been steady and the visitors will hope to improve on recent seasons’ brushes with relegation.

An opening day win of 5-2 over Oxford City suggested that would indeed be the case but conceding five to Oldham might be a little more chastening for Aldershot as they come to the Kuflink Stadium this Tuesday evening.

Tickets can be bought online here until kick-off (the match is segregated so please select HOME or AWAY options as necessary) and also on the night at our ticket windows. Car-parking is available for the special matchday price of £3 at Ebbsfleet International Car Park C. Programmes can be pre ordered online with your ticket or from our online shop here. In the ground, you can purchase in the club shop, at the Plough End social club and by the popup bar on the way to the Main Stand.

Supporters are reminded that alcohol will not be permitted to be consumed within view of the pitch and that matches will be segregated as required at the Swanscombe End (or the far end of it). Please cooperate with the instructions of our security team and stewards.

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