Maidenhead United vs Dorking Wanderers (or Barratt vs Bowerman) kicks off at 12:30pm in the Vanarama National League on Saturday.
Both players came to the attention of their current National League employers courtesy of starring roles at Bracknell Town, and while Barratt’s route to York Road was split by a spell in the Football League with Southend United, Bowerman was snapped up by Wanderers a couple of months ago following almost two years of interest which would only have been heightened following the wingers key role for the Robins title win last season.
Bowerman or Barratt? Tell us which Berkshire boy you’d pick in the comments below
And while both played their way into the spotlight at Bracknell, it should be mentioned it was Woodley United that the Robins snapped Barratt up from, while Bowerman’s route to the club came from a breakthrough couple of seasons with Binfield and then briefly, Flackwell Heath.
Barratt of course now is an established part of the National League furniture with Maidenhead since returning from Southend, playing (according to TransferMarkt.co.uk) over 100 times for the Magpies since first joining the club in 2014 from Bracknell, winning the Vanarama National League South in the process.
Bowerman remains a newcomer to Step 1, but has already made his mark at the newly promoted Wanderers in over half a dozen appearances, winning the club’s October Player of the Month award.
While there is certainly some intrigue in a meeting of two of Berkshire’s most prominent non-league stars, on the pitch it should be a much closer contest with both teams firmly entrenched in mid-table – Maidenhead two points ahead in 13th. Well as ‘entrenched’ as you can be in the National League, both teams are (in terms of points) two wins from a play-off spot and two defeats from sitting in the relegation zone.