It’s top against bottom in the second division, with 12 point leaders Team Northumbria facing Easington, who are seven points adrift of the others. Easington are without injured trio Dan Huntley, Chris Tarn and Dan Flounders, but Simon Todd returns and they include new signing David Paul.

The game of the day in the division is between two of the promotion challengers, Esh Winning and Hebburn. Esh, who are sixth, are at full strength, while Hebburn, a place below them, welcome back their top scorer, Liam McBryde, as well as defender Stephen Forster and midfielder Dean Walker. Manager Paul Bennett is hoping to include a new signing from a first division club.

The latest test of North Shields’ 16 month unbeaten away league record is Washington, and manager Anthony Woodhouse will choose from a full squad, except for injured defender Paul Watson.

Gillford Park, who have stormed up the table into a promotion place in recent weeks, are at home to Whickham, and they welcome back James Earl and Kelvin James, but Tyran Taylor and Mattie Lea are both injured. They are also hoping to sign striker Gavin Barton from Spennymoor before the game.

Birtley, who are unbeaten in their last eight matches, are at Ryton and manager Scott Oliver will be without six players for various reasons. Ryton have won their last two matches.

After a run of three straight defeats, Northallerton can’t afford to slip up again at Whitehaven, and they include youngster Nathan Hemmingbrough from their academy in the squad. Stuart Hardy, Grant Hickman and Martin Butterworth are all missing.

West Allotment, who forced themselves back into the promotion reckoning with a midweek win, are at home to Alnwick and will be missing Liam McIvor, so he is replaced by Chris Douglas.

Thornaby, who haven’t won in eight league matches, are at Seaham Red Star and they include three new signings, Steve Cochrane, Matthew Garbutt and Andy Sullivan as they try to stop the slide.

Chester-le-Street, who are fifth bottom, are at home to Brandon and are without midfielder Michael Coghlan because of a hand injury, while they could include a new signing. Brandon are missing Lewis Wing who is on County duty and Craig Mountain, Ian Rcae and Andy Beamson.

In the other game, third bottom Horden are at Morpeth.