National League South Playoffs: Preview

The National League South is composed of 22 teams, all in close proximity compared to the north and many teams surrounding the capital. Maidenhead United sealed automatic promotion ahead of Ebbsfleet United this season with 98 points.

In bizarre fashion this year two teams were disqualified from the National League South playoffs: Poole Town and Hungerford Town. Despite appeals their disqualification from the playoffs was upheld by the FA. This means that 7th place Hampton & Richmond Borough will take the remaining playoff place.

The first leg fixtures will start on Wednesday 3rd May at 19:45. All live goal updates can be accessed by following my twitter account.


Chelmsford City v Dartford

First Leg: Wednesday 3rd May 2017 – 19:45 K.O. @ Melbourne Stadium

Second Leg: Sunday 7th May 2017 – 15:00 K.O. @ Princes Park


Chelmsford City

Chelmsford City are probably most known for having ex England international Jimmy Greaves play for them in the late 1970’s. The Essex club finished 4th this campaign and only lost 6 games along the way.

After a bottom half finish last season this season may come as a bit of a surprise for Chelmsford supporters. Led by the goals from Shaun Jeffers, who has scored 21 goals in the league this season, they go into the playoffs with the same odds as 3rd placed Dartford.

With the current chairman resigning from his position and financial pressure over a failed takeover you could say there is a lot riding on them to achieve promotion through the playoffs.



Dartford were spared relegation in the 2013/14 Conference Premier due to two teams being demoted higher up. However the season after they were relegated to their current league; the National League South.

Having just missed out on a playoff place last season they will be looking to make this campaign count and get back to the top tier of non league football. They are currently 4th in the form table of the division, having won 4 of their last 5 games, and will be looking to continue in the playoffs.

Luke Wanadio is one to watch for Dartford. The ex Fulham youth player attracted interest from football league clubs a few years go when playing for Staines Town, being dubbed a ‘non league sensation’. He has scored 12 goals for Dartford this season.

Hampton & Richmond Borough v Ebbsfleet United

First Leg: Wednesday 3rd May 2017 – 19:45 K.O. @ Beveree Stadium

Second Leg: Sunday 7th May 2017 – 15:00 K.O. @ Stonebridge Road


Hampton & Richmond Borough

A smaller club in the London area due to the popularity of the nearby ruby union team, Hampton have a core support of 400 fans who occupy the Beveree Stadium.

Having won the Isthmian League title in 2016 Hampton will be looking at back to back promotions if they can come out on top in the playoffs. After a strong start to the season Hampton lost Nicke Kabamba and leading goalscorer Jamal Lowe to League 2 Portsmouth in January. This halted their early success and they could only manage a 7th place finish.

However Hampton must be thinking it’s fate as they were awarded the remaining playoff place after 5th and 6th place Poole Town and Hungerford were ruled out of the playoffs due to FA National League regulations. They play


Ebbsfleet United

A club with ambition Ebbsfleet have had some large investment to get them back into the National League, however just missed out on automatic promotion by 2 points.

They remain the favourites to win the playoffs however were in the exact same position last season, finishing second in the league and eventually losing out to Maidstone in the final on penalties.

They are the highest scorers in the National League South this season, having scored 96 goals. On top of this they have only conceded 30 all season, which gives them a mouthwatering goal difference of +66.

Vote in my poll for who you think will win the Vanarama National League South Playoffs 2017 and tweet me your reasons why!

Published by Dan Simmonite

Aspiring sport media professional currently working with Northumberland FA. Also write for the grassroots section of the Newcastle Chronicle.

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