The release of the Southern League Central Premier Division fixtures has emphasised what a tough test Peterborough Sports are facing in 2019-20.
In their first season as a step three side, Sports start at home to a physical Rushall Olympic side on August 10 and then face three away games in a row at a King’s Langley side that reached the play-offs last season, and then at promotion fancies Tamworth and Biggleswade Town.
Ex-Posh centre-forward Rene Howe plays for King’s Langley.
Sports would have had a home game against Banbury in the middle of those away games, but that’s been postponed because of an early FA Cup tie at either Bugbrooke St Michael or Norwich CBS two clubs who play three levels below Sports.
Other juicy fixtures for the top city side are AFC Rushden & Diamonds away on Boxing Day and a local derby of sorts at manager Jimmy Dean’s old club St Ives on October 12.
“The fixtures have just brought home how hard our season will be,” Dean said. “August is going to be so hard, but it’s also very exciting and we can’t wait to get into it.”
Sports are at Wisbech Town for a friendly tomorrow (July 13).
The Southern Leagues are sponsored by BetVictor rather than Evo Stik this season.
Yaxley start their Division One Central campaign at home to Halesowen Town on August 17. when Wisbech (home to Leek), Stamford AFC (away to Glossop North End) and Spalding United (away to Sutton Coldfield) also open their Northern Premier South East Division.
Local FA competition draws:
FA Cup extra prelminary round: Harborough Town v Deeping Rangers, Holbeach United v Fakenham, March Town v Norwich United, Walsham le Willows v Peterborough Northern Star.
Preliminary round: Biggleswade FC or Mildenhall v Yaxley, Kirkley & Pakefield or Wroxham v Stamford AFC, Peterborough Sports v Bugbrooke St Micheals or Norwich CBS, Spalding United v Dereham.
FA Trophy: Extra preliminary round: Stamford AFC v Loughborough Dynamo, Sutton Coldfield v Yaxley.
FA Vase (August 31): Bourne Town v Sleaford, Ely City v Peterborough Northern Star, Holbeach United v Lincoln Moorlands Railway, Norwich CBS v March Town.