Preview: Walthamstow vs Sporting Bengal United

The return of non-league football will bring a sense of Deja Vu for Walthamstow as their first game back is the reverse of the opening day of the season as Sporting Bengal United travel across East London.

Walthamstow find themselves 7th after 9-games, with a record of won 6 and lost 3. Their last game before the enforced break saw Stow bow out of the FA Vase with a penalty loss to Step-6 Ampthill Town but their last league game was an ever-so important 1-0 victory over Saffron Walden Town on the road. The season had began with a victory at Mile End before the Stags faced two home defeats against Stansted and Southend Manor. Those defeats were out of the mind quickly as the club embarked on a 3-game winning win beating West Essex, Hashtag United and Woodford Town but the third loss of the season came at Lowfield against Hoddesdon Town. The last two games have ended in victory with a 7-0 win over Sawbridgeworth Town and the win over Walden.

Last season, Walthamstow were one of the favourites for the title. They went to battle with the Bloods and Hashtag United for the title, finding themselves 3rd when the season was brought to an end. Stow sat in 3rd with 63 points, 2 behind the Tags and 3 behind league-leaders Walden. After 26-games, they had won 20, drew 3 and lost 3 whilst scoring 73 (2nd-best) and conceding 17 (best record).

Sporting Bengal United sit in 11th after 11-games, with a record of won 4, drew 1 and lost 6. They faced defeat at home on the opening day of the season before picking up their first point in the game that followed with a goalless draw with St Margaretsbury. The first win of the season came in a 3-2 win at Oakside against Redbridge before they failed to win 3-games on the bounce with defeats against Cockfosters, Southend Manor and Hadley. They picked up a huge win over Stansted, beating the Airportmen 3-1 away from home, before adding that to with a win over Ilford. They faced two defeats against Sawbridgeworth Town and Woodford Town, either side of another huge win over West Essex in their last 3-games.

Bengal were 15th last season when the season was brought to an end prematurely. After 26 games, they won 8, drew 4 and lost 14 whilst scoring 44 but conceding 62 in the process. One of their most notable wins came at Mile End against Hashtag United in a shock win but had the season continued, they still had the change to finish in a higher position.

The opening day matchup between these two sides was won by Stow as goals from Charncey Dash, Jon Clements and Sam Jeremiah were enough despite a last-minute free-kick goal from the hosts. Both sides will hope to get back to winning ways in the first-game back since the break but it will be a tough game with both sides have one training session on the pitch so it will be difficult to see who will have benefitted most from the break.