It’s The Big One! Oldham Athletic (A)

by Peter Scherer

This Saturday will be the biggest match in Mickleover history, when we visit Oldham Athletic in the third round of the FA Trophy at Boundary Park.

The Latics were Division Two Champions in 1990/91 and founder members of the Premiership, before being relegated in 1992.

FA Cup semi finalists in 89/80 and 93/94 and League Cup runners-up 1989/90, they than slipped through the divisions and finally out of the league in 2018.

Mickleover will still be without captain Ryan Wilson, striker Andre Wright and full back Rhys Dolan, but new signing Leon Clarke will also be unavailable, as he is cup tied after playing for Kettering.

Currently 10th in the National League, Micky Mellon’s side have had a mixed season, losing their last home game 1-4 to Ebbsfleet, having won at Barnet in the previous game by the same score.

They didn’t play last Saturday, as their home game against Boreham Wood postponed due to a frozen pitch. Mellon has been in charge for just over a month, having previously been manager at Tranmere, Dundee Utd, Shrewsbury and Barnsley.

Matthew Hudson is their first-choice goalkeeper, a former Preston North End Junior, signed from Buxton in in December 2022. He was also loaned to Bury and Bamber Bridge before joining Buxton on his release.

Magnus Norman and Dan Langley are their other keepers. Norman is a former Fulham Junior and England C International. He came from Carlisle in July 2022 and had previously been loaned to Farnborough, Hayes & Yeading, Southport and Rochdale.

Langley is a more recent arrival, from Blyth Spartans just over a month ago. He had been loaned to Gateshead and Spennymoor too.

Captain Liam Hogan is a centre back, who was spotted by Stockport County when he played for Woodley Sports. He then spent three years at Halifax, before joining Fleetwood, who also loaned him to Macclesfield. 

Tranmere was his next stop, before spells at Gateshead and Salford, preceded a 2 ½ year stay back at Stockport. He came to Oldham in July 2022.

Fellow centre back Harison McGahey is in his third season with the club, having come from Scunthorpe in July 2021. He started at Blackpool, before joining Sheffield Utd in 2015. After a loan at Tranmere he moved on to Rochdale a year later, before spending 2 ½ years at Scunthorpe.

Charlie Raglan is a centre back, who started his junior career overseas with UD Guargacho, Juan Migue and CD Marino, before joining Port Vale in 2011. He was loaned at Hinckley Utd and Chasetown before making his stay at Hinckley permanent.

Next stops were Nantwich and FC United, before a three-year spell at Chesterfield. He then joined Oxford Utd after an initial loan, but they loaned him out to Port Vale and Cheltenham, joining the latter permanently. But after four years at Cheltenham he came to Boundary Park pre-season.

 Shaun Hobson is yet another centre back and former Burnley and Bournemouth Junior. He was loaned to Eastbourne, Chester, Eastleigh and Weymouth, before joining Southend on his release. He was another pre-season arrival.

Left back Mark Kitching spent most of his career at Middlesbrough. He was loaned to York City, before a permanent move to Rochdale following an initial loan. He then went to Hartlepool, before coming to Oldham after two years at Stockport County.

Kieron Freeman is a former Welsh International at full, Under 17, 19 and 21 levels. Initially a Nottingham Forest Junior, he was loaned out to Mansfield and Notts County, before signing for Derby in 2013.

He was loaned back to Notts County, along with Sheffield Utd and Mansfield, before a permanent move to the Blades. But after another loan Portsmouth, he was released and moved on via Swindon and Swansea, with a two-year spell back at Portsmouth preceding his pre-season move to Oldham.

Defensive midfielder Nathan Sheron started out at Liverpool’s Academy. He moved onto Fleetwood and was loaned to Chorley, Chester, Southport, Walsall and St.Mirren, before a permanent move to Harrogate in 2021. He came to Oldham in July last year.

Dan Gardner is a central midfielder whose career began at Celtic.  Crewe Alexandra then picked him up from Flixton, but he soon moved on to Droylsden, Halifax and Chesterfield. Loans at Tranmere and Bury followed, before he first came to Oldham in July 2017.

After two years he joined Salford, moving on again to Wigan, before starting 21/22 season at Doncaster. He came back to Oldham at the start of last season.

Josh Lundstrom is a former England C International midfielder, who has spent most of his career at Crewe Alexandra. He had loans at Nuneaton, Kidsgrove, Altrincham and Solihull Moors, before moving permanently to Altrincham in July 2022. He was another pre-season arrival at Boundary Park.

Dan Ward is a midfielder too, having been in Newcastle Utd’s Academy, after starting out at South Shields and Seaham Red Star. Following his release he spent a year at Middlesbrough and six months at Spennymoor, before joining St.Patricks Athletic in the Republic of Ireland. He came to Oldham pre-season, after almost three years at Gateshead.

Midfielder Mark Shelton started out at Burton Albion and after a loan at Loughborough, moved onto Ilkeston. Alfreton and Salford were his next stops, before being loaned out to Woking and Hartlepool, joining the latter permanently. He joined the Latics in January, after 2 ½ years at Hartlepool.

Winger Devarn Green started at Burton too, before a three-year spell at Blackburn Rovers. Hednesford, Stourbridge, Tranmere, Southport and Scunthorpe all followed, before he came to Oldham in February, after a year at Telford.

Striker Hallam Hope is a full international with Barbados, having previous represented England at Under, 16,17 and 18 and 19 levels. He’s a former Manchester City and Everton Academy player and was loaned to Northampton, Bury and Sheffield Wednesday, before making a full time move to Bury on his release.

He moved to Carlisle after an initial loan and was at Swindon for 18 months, before joining Oldham in July 2021.

Striker James Norwood is another former England C International, who was signed pre-season. He played his junior football at Old Town Boys, Brighton, Crystal Palace and Eastbourne, before joining Exeter City in 2009.

He was loaned back to Eastbourne and then joined Forest Green after an initial loan. After four years at Tranmere, he had another three with Ipswich Town and spent last season with Barnsley.

Striker Joe Nuttall was at Manchester City initially, before heading north to Aberdeen. He was loaned to Stranraer and Dumbarton, before returning to England with Blackburn Rovers. He was then at Blackpool, but moved to Scunthorpe after a loan at Northampton and became a Latic in December 2022.

Kurt Willoughby was signed from Chester in pre-season. Another former England C International, he was previously at Clitheroe, Fylde and York City.

Fellow striker Mike Fondop came from Hartlepool in January 2022. He started at Stanway Rovers, before moving to Billericay, Margate and Oxford City.

His first move north was to Guiseley, with Wrexham and Maidenhead soon following, before he arrived at Chesterfield in 2019. Aldershot and Burton Albion were next, before he went to Hartlepool in September 2021.

Alex Reid is another well-travelled striker, after starting at Manchester City. He moved to Walsall, Solihull, Rushall and Fleetwood, before loan spells with Wrexham and Solihull. 

Stevenage was his next stop and they loaned him to Fylde, Ebbsfleet and Dagenham & Redbridge, before a permanent move to Stockport. After another loan at Solihull, he left Stockport to come to Boundary Park in November 2022.

Midfielder Brennan Dickenson came from Carlisle pre-season.  He started with Dorchester, before a move to Brighton and was then loaned to Chesterfield, AFC Wimbledon and Northampton. Gillingham came next, followed by Colchester, MK Dons and Exeter, before spending three years at Carlisle before his move to Oldham.

Defender Will Sutton is one of the few home- grown squad members. After coming through the ranks, he has been loaned out to Witton Albion and Farsley Celtic.

Kick off at Boundary Park is 3pm and we hope to see as much Mickleover support as we can muster. 

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