A HOST of visiting sides will venture into the unknown at Nethermoor this season, with Mark Bower calling on his Guiseley side to turn it into a forbidding fortress.
Home form has been the bedrock of the Lions’ accomplished statistics under Bower, whose side face back-to-back home games this week, starting with old rivals Altrincham tonight in their first game at Nethermoor in the National League.
Kidderminster Harriers follow on Saturday, with Bower under no illusions about the importance of home form to their seasonal fates this term.
Tonight’s opponents Alty may be well versed when it comes to Nethermoor, but a host of others are not so familiar, with Bower keen that rival National League sides don’t remember it fondly in 2015-16 and that the welcome mat is kept away from the pitch.
Guiseley were felled 1-0 at Welling in Saturday’s season opener and Bower said: “We definitely need good home form. If we are going to have some success this season, we definitely need to pick up a fair few wins here.
“Maybe not so much with the likes of Altrincham who come here, but some of the bigger full-time teams in the Conference might not fancy Guiseley on a Tuesday night or Saturday afternoon in November.
“It might not be quite what some players have been used to throughout their careers and be a bit of an eye-opener for them.
“Hopefully, we can use that to our advantage.
“The pitch actually looks fairly good and hopefully we will continue to play good stuff on it, which is what we look to do.”
This week will be a proud one for Guiseley and the army of volunteers at Nethermoor, who have worked tirelessly throughout the close season to keep it ship-shape for the National League season, with Bower hoping to reward all their efforts by way of some positive results on home soil.
Bower added: “So much more requirements are required on a match-day stepping up to this level in terms of the facilities and personnel you need.
“There’s more advertising and the programme has had to change amongst a raft of changes really.
“Most of the volunteers who have stepped up and help the club have been fantastic and while the club have stepped up a level, we will keep that welcoming family feel to it.
“That’s part of our strength.”
FC Halifax Town are also in action at home this evening with the visit of Chester to The Shay.
In National League North, Harrogate Town will look to get their season up and running with tonight’s visit of Gainsborough Trinity.
Bradford Park Avenue also travel to Stalybridge Celtic.
Action in the Evo-Stik League does not begin until this weekend but the NCE League campaign takes in its second slice of action tonight with opening day winners Tadcaster Albion at home to Parkgate in the Premier.
Liversedge also welcome Thackley while Garforth Town face a trip to the east coast at Bridlington Town with Nostell Miners Welfare at Barton Town Old Boys.
Knaresborough Town visit Rossington Main in Division One while Hemsworth Miners Welfare entertain AFC Emley in a League Cup first round derby.
Yorkshire Amateur also welcome Hall Road Rangers in the first round with Glasshoughton Welfare at home to Lincoln Moorlands Railway.