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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 August 2006, 09:55 GMT 10:55 UK
Brian Horton on League Two
By Paul Fletcher

Brian Horton
I think it will be a very even division

Macclesfield manager Brian Horton has been busy watching his League Two opposition ahead of the new season.

The 57-year-old has presided over more than 1,000 games as a manager but is at a loss to predict who will impress when the action starts on 5 August.

"You just don't have a clue in our division," Horton told BBC Sport. "I'm watching as many games as I can.

"There has been a huge turnover of players at many clubs and you cannot be quite sure how they are going to gel."

Macclesfield struggled at the wrong end of the table for most of last season, finishing a disappointing 17th.

Yet the club were only 12 points off the play-offs, leading Horton to conclude: "It was daft last season.

"Our relegation worries went down to the last game yet we finished four wins off the top seven.

"We threw games away last year, we lost seven games in the last minute. Convert two or three of those into wins and it is very different.

"I think it will be the same again this season - a very even division."

Nonetheless, there are teams that Horton believes have a good chance, including relegated Hartlepool.

They came down from League One last season along with Milton Keynes, Swindon and Walsall.

Hartlepool have a chance but it is hard to say

Brian Horton
"I was surprised that Hartlepool came down but they have kept most of their squad together," he said.

"Swindon have got Dennis Wise and I'm sure they will be having a go, while Milton Keynes have some good players and almost escaped last season."

Accrington Stanley and Hereford have come into the division following promotion from the Conference.

Stanley's return to League football after a 44-year absence adds another local derby to Macclesfield's fixture list.

And Horton said: "I have heard good reports about Accrington after their 4-1 win at Northwich but again it is pre-season and difficult to say.

"Notts County have had a massive turnaround of players, as have Rochdale and Bury.

"Bristol Rovers should be strong, they are one of the biggest teams in the division.

"I saw Darlington last week and manager Dave Hodgson has brought in a lot of players."

Horton might be unsure as to who will form the leading pack but he is confident that no one team will dominate at the top of the table.

He stated: "It is always competitive and close - and there aren't many teams who run away with it."

League Two form guide
01 Aug 06 |  League Two
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01 Aug 06 |  League Two


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