Preview: Rovers prepare for the Stones
Forest Green’s final regular home league game of the season sees Rovers welcome Maidstone United to The New Lawn on Saturday (3pm).
It’ll be the Stones first visit to FGR in what is also Mark Cooper’s side’s final home outing ahead of the upcoming play-off campaign.
The game is another opportunity to gain momentum heading into the club’s third consecutive play-offs and will prove a worthy test as Maidstone are riding high near the top of the form table.
The two teams last met back in the opening month of the season when FGR’s first ever trip to the Gallagher Stadium ended in a successful 4-1 win.
After Saturday’s game FGR will also be hosting the club’s End of Season Presentation where players, ambassadors and other figures will be honoured for their work at the club. All fans are invited to attend in the Carol Embrey Suite for the event, which gets started at 5.30pm.
Buy tickets for Saturday’s fixture online on the club shop by clicking here.
The concussion suffered by Curtis Tilt in Easter Monday’s fixture at Southport rules him out.
However Keanu Marsh-Brown is back in contention and Drissa Traore may return to the squad.
A mid-season dip in form has seen Maidstone react by putting together a fantastic run of results heading into the climax of the season. They head into this weekend’s game having lost only one of their last 12 National League outings.
It has been a positive first season at this level. Not only have they made progress on the pitch but the Kent club have also continued to strengthen off it – with additional developments at their Gallagher Stadium home.
They occupy 13th position before Saturday’s game and will be looking to end the season on a high by claiming a top place in the top half of the table.
In the dugout
Jay Saunders has led Maidstone through the Ryman League, National League South and into the fifth tier and will be all set to lead the Stones into the future too – after they confirmed they will go full time next season.
He’s assisted by former Gillingham midfielder Nicky Southall who had a stint as player/manager at Whistable Town before linking up with Maidstone.
Wearing the gloves
After many years serving as the number one at Tonbridge Angels, Lee Worgan made the cross-county move to become the goalkeeper at Maidstone in 2013 – and he’s been a key part of their rise.
The former Wales under 21 international has played in the Football League for Wimbledon and Rushden & Diamonds, and can also recall time spent at Hastings United and Cardiff.
Maidstone boast some towering figures in their back line including the highly experienced Magnus Okuonghae and former Welling pair Kevin Lokko and Antony Acheampong.
Seth Nana-Twumasi, the former Chelsea youngster, brings energy from right back and they also include left back Tom Mills and Jamie Coyle as potential defensive selections.
Jay Saunders has used the loan market well to boost his midfield ranks. His recruits include Stuart Lewis, who is on loan from Ebbsfleet, Jake McCarthy, from Bournemouth and Reece Prestedge – who is signed on from division rivals Bromley.
They also feature former Cambridge United youngster Bobby-Joe Taylor who is a driven player whose very capable with both feet.
Another loan addition is Cambridge loanee Joe Pigott. The 23-year-old brings size to their front line with fans favourite Alex Flisher also lively in and around the box.
Former FGR man Yemi Odubade scored their winner in their last outing against Boreham Wood, while they also include former Norwich City youngster Jamar Loza. The Jamaica international is a lethal finisher when in front of goal.
Buy online for tickets for Saturday’s game via the FGR club shop. You can print your tickets off at home or have them sent to your phone to gain access at the turnstiles. Click here to access the shop.
On matchday itself the ticket office will also be open for fans wanting to purchase in person.
Under 11s can enjoy free entry to all home matches, meanwhile Football League and Premier League season ticket holders can gain half price entry with proof of their season ticket.
Open to both home and away fans, The Green Man is a great place to enjoy a drink and some food in the run up to kick-off.
FGR fans who have bought tickets for the East Stand can also enjoy what’s on offer in the Carol Embrey Suite with a full bar and food available both before the game and after the match. The Black & White Lounge is also open to fans.
The Carol Embrey Suite will host the club’s End of Season Presentation after the match as well as the match sponsors man-of-the-match award presentation after full time.
Hear full match commentary of Saturday’s fixture with BBC Radio Gloucestershire’s coverage of the game. You can hear all the build up on their matchday show from 2.30pm before the game kicks off on 1413 AM and online just under 30 minutes later.
Other updates are available on social media. Check out @FGRFC_Official on Twitter for team news, live photos and match updates.
After the match visit the club website for the match report and exclusive match highlights.