Date: 5th August 2008 at 2:23pm
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The big kick-off is nearly upon us as the Silkmen play the first game of the season away at divisional big spenders Shrewsbury.

For the third year running, the Silkmen are starting the season with matches against pre-season favourites for promotion as they face a shrewsbury side who will feature £170,000 signing Grant Holt in their XI.

Shrewsbury have looked to improve the way they ended last season, as they slid down the division, even to the extent of looking over their shoulders at the relegation battle.

But new manager Paul Simpson is working hard to improve their chances of promotion for the coming campaign.

As well as Grant Holt, Shrewsbury have brought in striker Richard Walker from Bristol Rovers, Shane Sherriff from Tranmere, Graham Coughlan from Rotherham and West Brom ‘keeper Luke Daniels on loan.

The last time the two clubs met, the Silkmen were 2-1 winners. The visitors going a goal up in the 65th minute, only for Jamie Tolley to equalise after 82, and Franny Green to win the game three minutes later.

As well as being favourites to achieve promotion, the bookies are not giving the Silkmen much of a chance with odds of 10/3.

Former Shrew Jamie Tolley, is 8/1 to score at any time in the game.


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