This Saturday the high-flying Salford City travel to the LCI Rail Stadium where they will take on Gloucester City in the Vanarama National League North.

The Ammies go into this tie on the back of three consecutive wins in which they have scored 12 goals and conceded none.

The run, which has seen them thrash Nuneaton Town 4-0, FC United 3-0 and AFC Fylde 5-0 has rocketed Salford up the table and they now sit second, nine points behind leaders Fylde.

Gloucester City themselves are enjoying a good run of form, and they too have won their last three matches to nil – beating Worcester City 3-0, Tamworth 2-0 and AFC Telford 2-0.

Gloucester now find themselves tenth in the table after four wins in their last five league matches, though before their 1-0 win over Altrincham at the turn of the year they had lost six on the bounce in the league.

Last time out Salford enjoyed one of their best performances of the season as they embarrassed AFC Fylde at Moor Lane – beating the league leaders 5-0 thanks to a Jordan Hulme hat trick and goals from Billy Priestly and Mike Phenix.

While Gloucester beat Telford at the New Bucks Head Ground 2-0 after Zac Kotwica struck early and Luke Hopper added a flourish in the fifth minute of injury time.

The last time the sides met was on the opening day of the 2016/17 season where the points were shared in a 1-1 draw at Moor Lane.

James Poole netted early in the second half for the Ammies before Joe Parker equalised in the 67th minute to ensure Gloucester went home with a point.

Following his goal last weekend Phenix now has 13 goals this season and is Salford’s top scorer – though Hulme is catching his forward partner up now, as after his hat trick last time out he sits on nine goals for the season.

Scott Burton and Brad Barnes have struck up a formidable midfield partnership for Salford in recent weeks, and despite not being on the scoresheet last time, they were key to Salford’s victory – their tireless work in midfield ensuring the opposition had very few opportunities to play.

Salford have now conceded just three goals in their last eight games – keeping six clean sheets. A big part of that has been skipper Simon Grand’s centre half partnership with Billy Priestly, though Michael Nottingham and Carlisle-loanee Patrick Brough have also been in exemplary form.

For the Tigers, Joe Hanks has become a key figure in the middle of the park – the 21-year-old has four goals from his 27 appearances – but will face a big challenge on Saturday as he goes head-to-head with Burton and Barnes.

The danger man up top for Gloucester is Luke Hopper – he has 11 goals in 24 appearances this term and will be looking to cause problems for the Ammies defence.

Going into this one both sides are searching for a fourth straight league win – but it is difficult to look past Salford – who last week looked imperious against the league leaders.

Matt Bullin

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