THE weather forecast is good and the pitches are playable which can mean only one thing — the Isle of Wight's football clubs are back in action after their Christmas break.

In the Sydenhams Wessex Premier, Cowes Sports will want to start 2019 in positive fashion with a result away at second-placed Portland United — but it will be a very tough ask for the Yachtsmen, third-bottom and with only one win in the past 13 games.

The Island's two other big clubs have home games in Sydenhams Wessex Division 1, with East Cowes Vics, lying 13th after their home derby defeat to Newport last week, entertaining Hythe & Dibden, who are lying third in the league, at Beatrice Avenue.

Ninth-placed Newport play the first of four consecutive home league games at St George's Park, hosting Whitchurch United, in 14th, this afternoon (Saturday).

The Hampshire Intermediate and Junior A Cups, which had been badly affected by stormy weather on three consecutive Saturday's in the run-up to Christmas, resumes with third and fourth round ties.

In Division 1 of the Harwoods Renault Isle of Wight League, second-placed Northwood St John have the chance to cut the deficit at the top to five points when they play struggling Cowes Sports Reserves.

Osborne Coburg could move off the bottom if they beat mid-table Shanklin at the Isle of Wight Community Club, Cowes.

In Division 2, leaders Bembridge, who have dropped just three points all season, are away at third-bottom Wroxall, while second-placed Ryde Saints, five points adrift, against tenth-placed East Cowes Vics A at Smallbrook.  

                                                      TODAY'S FIXTURES

Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division: Portland United v Cowes Sports.

Sydenhams Wessex, Division 1: East Cowes Vics v Hythe & Dibden; Newport v Whitchurch United.

Hampshire Intermediate Cup, third round: East Cowes Vics Reserves v Portchester Reserves; Netley Central Sports v Brading Town; Pan Sports v Tadley Calleva Reserves.

Hampshire Intermediate Cup, fourth round: Braishfield v West Wight.

Hampshire Junior A Cup, third round: Capital v Niton Community; Newchurch v Tadley Calleva A; Oakfield Reserves v Fleet Spurs A.

Hampshire Junior A Cup, fourth round: Traco Athletic v Carisbrooke United.

Harwoods Renault Island League, Division 1: ECS v Ventnor; Northwood St John v Cowes Sports Reserves; Osborne Coburg v Shanklin; Sandown v Binstead & COB.

Division 2: Wootton v Oakfield; Adgestone v Seaview; Ryde Saints v East Cowes Vics A; Wroxall v Bembridge; Yarmouth & Calbourne v Brighstone.

Combination 1: Brading Town Res v West Wight Res; Ryde Saints Res v ECS Res; Shanklin Res v Northwood St John Res; Ventnor Res v Osborne Coburg Res; Whitecroft & Barton Sports Res v Binstead & COB Res.

Combination 2: Bembridge Res v Yarmouth & Calbourne Res; Niton Community Res v Carisbrooke United Res; Seaview Res v Wootton Res.