By Dominic Scurr
SETTING THE SCENE
A run of four games without defeat has seen Guiseley steer clear of potential relegation, something that at the midway point in the season, almost looked inevitable.
However, a fine run of form has seen Adam Lockwood’s men rise to 16th in the table and seven points clear of the drop zone. In fact, the Club are now just four points shy of their total tally for last season with eight games still to play.
The Lions have secured three wins in their last four matches, including surprise wins against Barrow and Aldershot, and come to Gateshead off the back of a well-earned draw against Boreham Wood on Saturday.
The West Yorkshire outfit have now only lost three games since the turn of year and only one side have taken more National League points than them in 2017.
That side is of course, Gateshead, who come into Tuesday night’s game on the back of a stoppage time win over struggling Woking at the International Stadium on Saturday.
Since their 4-1 win over Barrow on New Year’s Eve, the Heed have proceeded to take 29 points out of a possible 36 which has seen their season turn around in dramatic fashion.
From a side that looked to be heading for another uninspiring mid-table finish, the Heed are now in with a very realistic shout of making the National League play-offs and look a significantly more formidable side than they did at the midway point in the season.
Manager Neil Aspin said: “Now we’re looking at the possibility of having a couple of players injured from the weekend but we’re obviously hoping they will be in the squad for tomorrow.”
WHAT WE’RE SAYING
Aspin said ahead of tomorrow night’s game: “Guiseley are a good team with good players and they are on a good run which will make them a match for anyone in this league.
“No body should come to the stadium on Tuesday expecting a win because we will still have to play well against an in form side.
“The message is that it’s going to be tough and we need to play at our best.”
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Lions’ boss Adam Lockwood said following his side’s 0-0 draw with Boreham Wood on Saturday: “I knew this would be a tough game, so this is an important point for the side and we go again against Gateshead on Tuesday.
“From our point of view, we have come away with a clean sheet, so it’s been a good week for us. We can prepare for Tuesday now and another difficult away game.
“We’ll have to access our squad before that game because John (Rooney), who’s a whole-hearted player and put his body on the line, has been injured. That sometimes happens when you’re as committed as John.”
A win for Gateshead on Tuesday will see them surpass last season’s final points total of 67 with seven games remaining.
Tickets are priced at, £15 for adults, £10 for concessions, £8 for 16-17-year-olds/students and £3 for under-16s.
LAST TIME WE MET
A cold Autumn night saw little action at Nethermoor Park until Simon Walton put the hosts in front from the penalty spot with just over 20 minutes remaining.
But a late equaliser from Danny Johnson saw the Heed avoid a potentially embarrassing defeat against a side who, at the time, were rock bottom of the National League table.