Next Match – Yeovil Town (H)

Bath City welcome local rivals Yeovil Town this Wednesday at a sold-out Twerton Park.

Yeovil had won a club record 14 successive games until the FA Trophy defeat at Torquay last month, and have scored in every league match since the opening day loss at Hemel Hempstead. They are top of the National League South, six points clear of Maidstone and eight ahead of Aveley, with a game in hand on both, but are winless in their last four in all competitions. Sunday saw them knocked out of the FA Cup at League Two Wrexham – the 3-0 reverse replicating their last visit to the Racecourse in April when their relegation from the National League was confirmed.

The Romans are sixth, nine points off Yeovil. This is the first time since 1989/90 that City have accumulated 33 points before the end of November. At the end of that season, they were promoted. It’s also the doing best return for City under Jerry Gill from their first 20 league games, matched in the 2018/19 and 2019/20 play-off campaigns.

This is Yeovil’s first season at Step 2 since 1996-97, when Gill scored 16 goals in his only campaign with the Glovers to help them to the Isthmian League title.

Tomorrow will be the first league meeting between Bath and Yeovil since April 1995. With Gill in the side for the Romans, City won that game 3-0 at Twerton Park and effectively consigned Yeovil to relegation. The current City boss scored against Yeovil in an FA Trophy replay at Twerton Park in January 1994, netting the second in a 4-0 win.

This will be the first competitive contest at Twerton Park since October 2002, a 1-1 draw in the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round. Yeovil won the replay 3-1 to earn a home tie with Cheltenham Town. They won the Conference that year and went on to spend 16 years in the Football League.

There have been two Somerset Premier Cup ties since then. City won 2-0 at Huish Park in the semi-finals in 2008 and lost 3-0 in the final in 2022. In all we have played Yeovil, in their various guises, 272 times. Bath have won 94 of those, Yeovil 121.

City will be without goalkeeper Will Buse, who is on loan from Yeovil and therefore unavailable for this fixture and for the return at Huish Park on 6 January. Slavomir Huk has joined from Dorking Wanderers as cover and made his debut in last Tuesday’s 3-1 win over Frome in the Somerset Premier Cup. Joe Raynes started that game in defence and despite some believing he would don the gloves against City’s arch-rivals, the Huk signing has finally put to bed any rumours.

The Romans lost their six-game unbeaten run on Saturday following a disappointing 3-2 defeat at home to Chelmsford. They’ve still scored in all bar one home game, whereas Yeovil are yet to record a clean sheet on the road in National League South, their last was in January at Dagenham. Their top scorer Rhys Murphy is suspended. He has scored 13 in all competitions but picked up a fifth yellow at Chippenham, which brought a one-match ban. One of those knocking on the door will be Sonny Cox, who scored eight in 22 outings for City in the second half of last season.

We hope you’ve got your ticket for this mouthwatering West Country Derby!