New Year's honours for winning trio

By David Watters

Altrincham, Basford United and Droylsden are the EVO-STIK League's final performance kings of 2017!

Premier Division leaders Altrincham and South Division pace-setters Basford are both looking forward to collecting their second Northern Premier League 'Club of the Month' accolades of the historic 2017-18 season after being named on Tuesday as December's top performers alongside first-time winners Droylsden.

Like all winners of the monthly honours, the trio will be presented with engraved glass mementos to mark their form and results over the last four weeks and bottles of spirits to celebrate with at upcoming fixtures by representatives of the Northern Premier League.

The Bloods are preparing to be presented with their first award of the NPL's milestone 50th anniversary campaign when they host Bamber Bridge at the Butcher's Arms on Saturday 20 January after securing four wins and a draw in EVO-STIK League North under the guidance of manager Dave Pace.

After kicking off the final month of 2017 with a sedate 1-1 draw at home to Goole, their run of form included two impressive wins on the road, 5-0 and 7-0 triumphs at Atherton Collieries and Radcliffe Borough respectively.

Runaway leaders Basford and their manager Martin Carruthers scooped November's honours in EVO-STIK League South and they are now a massive 21 points clear of their nearest rivals after a December run of four wins and a draw before kicking off 2018 with a New Year's Day victory at Loughborough Dynamo.

United, who scored 16 goals along the way in what is turning into a procession to the title and promotion, will also be honoured on Saturday 20 January when they host Peterborough Sports at Greenwich Avenue.

Altrincham suffered a set-back to their title ambitions on New Year's Day but are still flying high at the top of the Premier Division table and seven points clear thanks to their form in December when Phil Parkinson and his side secured maximum points from four league outings while conceding a solitary goal and scoring 11 times.

The Robins, honoured for the first time this season as one of October's performance kings, will collect their second accolade from representatives of the EVO-STIK League on Saturday 27 January when they host Workington at Moss Lane.

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Where next?

2017's final fair play kings named! Lancaster City, Atherton Collieries and joint winners Lincoln United and Newcastle Town are heading into 2018 as the Northern Premier League's Frank Whittle Partnership fair play kings!
New Year's Day North Division review There are new leaders of the EVO-STIK League North, Prescot Cables starting 2018 on top after they hammered Skelmersdale and long-time leaders South Shields were beaten by Scarborough Athletic in the game of the day, writes Pitchero's Steve Whitney.

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