Harrogate Town v Dover Athletic: "Homecoming" will be "weird", says old boy Michael Woods

Michael Woods in action for Harrogate Town last season. Picture: Matt Kirkham
Michael Woods in action for Harrogate Town last season. Picture: Matt Kirkham

Michael Woods has not had to wait too long for a re-union with his former Harrogate Town team-mates.

The ex-Leeds United and Chelsea prodigy's second spell at Wetherby Road came to an end earlier this summer when he was released by Simon Weaver.

He has subsequently relocated to the south of England and signed up for another crack at the National League with Dover Athletic, visitors to the CNG Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

"It will be weird. I've never been back to Harrogate as an away player before," Woods said.

"I'm looking forward to it. This game and the Hartlepool matches were the first ones I looked for when the fixtures came out.

"There will be a lot of the same faces from last season out on the pitch and obviously I know plenty of people involved with the club. I'm excited to go back. It's a bit of a homecoming.

"With me being down south now this is one of the few games that my family can get to, but at the end of the day I just have to treat it as another chance to try and get three points for the club who are paying my wages now."

Woods and Dover have begun 2019/20 brightly. They head into the game sixth in the National League standings and have, rather ominously for Town, won all three of their away games to date, beating Chesterfield, Barnet and Sutton United in their own back yards.

"I've enjoyed it so far. I had a bit of a hit-and-miss season last year and I didn't want to end up having another one," Woods added.

"We've been doing okay but it's still early days. I don't think you can read too much into anything at this stage. What I will say is that I think Saturday's game will be as big a challenge as anything we've faced so far.

"You've got two quite different sides with different qualities. With Harrogate you know about their ability, that they're well-drilled and super fit. They knock it about a lot like Barnet, who we went and beat a few weeks ago.

"We had a strong finish to last season and have done well so far but we will go there full of respect."

Kick-off between Harrogate Town and Dover Athletic on Saturday is at 3pm.